Faith Daily | 13 August 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p570
Grant to us, Lord, we beseech you,
the spirit to think and do always such things as are right,
that we, who cannot do anything that is good without you,
may by you be enabled to live according to your will;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 19: 13-15
13Then little children were being brought to him in order that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples spoke sternly to those who brought them; 14but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.” 15And he laid his hands on them and went on his way.
GOSPEL REFLECTION: Peta-Anne Warwick
In this story, Matthew doesn’t tell us much about the children. How many children were there? Were they unruly or well-behaved? We know the disciples rebuked those who brought the children, but not why they did. Perhaps, the disciples thought Jesus was too busy preaching and teaching to take the time to bless the children or that Jesus should focus his ministry on the more “important” members of society. In nearly every society if there is something that embodies the opposite of power and status, it is children.
But, loving parents in an environment where infant mortality was likely to be very high would have an intense sense of urgency for their children to encounter Jesus and receive a blessing. They were powerless on their own to ensure the quality and quantity of their children’s lives. We see that Jesus wasn’t very impressed by his disciple’s reaction. Instead of being a hindrance or nuisance, Jesus sees these children as metaphors of true discipleship; they are essential benefactors of the mission of Jesus.
As in Matthew 18 vs 2, Jesus taught that a childlike faith is necessary to enter the kingdom of heaven. Just as young children instinctively trust their mother and father and rely on them for everything they need, we must humble ourselves before God to see the kingdom of heaven.
In this passage, children could represent those whom the world considers unimportant. This reminds us that the weaker people are, the more they require our care and concern. Let us pray today that we may deepen our respect for those whom the world holds in low esteem.
FINAL PRAYER (A prayer for precious children around the world from Philippa Hanna
Dear Lord Jesus.
Thank you so much for all the precious children in this world.
We know they mean so much to you.
We pray you would help us do all we can to protect and give them the start in life they deserve.
Lord, we bring to you all of the wonderful work being done to release children from poverty, and we pray that you would bless every pair of hands that works for you.
Increase and bless their efforts in Jesus name,