Too quickly forgotten is the value every man is to place upon others ahead of self. Too easily we slip into preoccupations with our own circumstances and see others as a help or hindrance in achieving those goals, long term or short, that we have set for ourselves.
“Suffer the little children” unintentionally becomes “Let the little children suffer.” Do not misunderstand, while some purposely target the little ones, most don’t. I have that confidence in humanity.
Those who intentionally target children are certanly worthy of attention, but they are outside the purview of this brief.
Several years ago, while counseling teens in juvenile court charged with truancy, the go-to excuse was, “I didn’t miss the bus on purpose.” While that sounds reasonable to the novice counselor, the question to be addressed was, “Did you get on the bus on purpose?” An ocean separates those positions. One is a reaction to responsibility, the other to whimsey.
Responsibility toward children, assigned by the creator, has no basis in convenience, personal comfort, or whimsy. It is not a response to some “good-feeling” moment or circumstance. It is not dismissed because of conflict or illness. It is a responsibility that calls into play “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23).
The key to this is the main thing with which mankind struggles: self-denial. God slipped off the throne in heaven because we needed Him to wrap Himself in humanity for our sakes. He only asks us to do what He did, hop off our little thrones and serve the most vulnerable among us: children.
Who among us will?
Kudos for use of the picture: momentarylapseofsanity.com