25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 26 Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.
27 “All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”Matthew 11:25-30 (NIV)
This year our country was reminded that even though it has been 157 years since President Lincoln signed the emancipation proclamation, the issue of race equality in the United States is not resolved. We have witnessed a season of civil unrest unlike many others since the 1960s. During this time I have seen many memes and videos on social media utilizing the images and actions of children as a lesson. The lesson being taught is hate and discrimination are not something we do from birth but something we are taught to do.
Throughout Jesus’s teaching moments, he would also use children to teach lessons. (See Matthew 18:3, Matthew 19:4, Luke 18:16, Mark 9:36-37) In the passage from Matthew 11, we get to hear Jesus praying to the Father. He points out that in order to see the true nature of him, and therefore the Father, we need not an approach of academia but one of a child. Children come at life with great curiosity and an openness that is accepting instead of closed and discrediting. For those who approach Jesus as a child, Jesus offers rest from the weariness of the world and a promise of helping carry the burdens.
The lesson here is our approach to discovering the nature of our Lord is key to what will be revealed to us. If we come to the Lord with all our learned views of the world and life, we will miss the true Jesus. But if we adopt the curiosity and openness of a child, we will find a Jesus who offers rest for our souls.