From the Mouth of Babes

The mouth of a three, soon-to-be, four-year old is a wondrous thing. As they are exposed to the unfolding world around them, they are constantly processing, digesting new vocabulary. At times, it’s quite scary; you never know what they might say. My son, Matthew, is no different.

In this case, however, his words moved me. They pierced through my exterior and touched the very deepest part of my being. I couldn’t believe they came out of his mouth; innocence and purity reflected hope that has long since escaped my world-worn, experience-battered faith. As they poured from his lips, I felt a lump in my throat and my eyes began to swell ahead of the tears.

Jr. and Sr.

Jr. and Sr.

We have a good friend from college who was born deaf. Despite his physical limitations and numerous challenges, he is highly functional, earning his undergraduate in Engineering and Master in Business Administration.

Last week, he was passing through town and needed a place to crash. Naturally, we offered him our guest room at the Ham House. I warned him before he came about the early mornings and general ‘shenanihams’ – our family’s reference to our general craziness. His response made me laugh, “I’m deaf, remember.”

In preparation for his stay, I had to tell the boys that he wouldn’t be able to hear them. They generally interact with anyone, MJ especially, and I envisioned them constantly talking to him, yet wondering, Why is he ignoring me?

I didn’t think much of our conversation after that and we had a great night with old friends.

Later that evening, I was putting MJ to bed, engaging our traditional routine: teeth brushing, fairytale and superhero stories, and prayers. It was during our prayer time when MJ’s words overtook me.

In his sweet, sleepy voice he said, “Dear God, thank you for Mr. Brent and please help him hear again.”

I was shocked, absolutely stunned. Not only had MJ remembered, he had compassion on our friend.

Most importantly, his words represented the faith of a child.

In moments like this, God shows Himself to me. He steps through the veil of my busy existence and places His hand firmly on my heart and says, “This is how I want you to believe.”

It wrecks me.

This type of childlike faith often escapes me. My mind is filled with continuous stories of unhealed sickness and death which leave me to wonder; lead me to wander.

However, when I catch a passing glimpse of the Father, I’m reminded that He is simply concerned with my willingness to Trust.

“I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”  Luke 18:17

“Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”               Matthew 18:4

“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” Mark 10:14

Over and over, Jesus tells us to approach Him with this child-like trust. He knows that is the type of humility needed to remove our hardened facade. He knows that this is where we begin to see.

At heart, we are all little children. But, in some ways, the years and the experiences have stripped us of our true self.

Let us return to our childlike faith, answering the call of the Christ.

Yes, Jesus loves the little children.

MH

QUESTION: What is one step you can take in childlike faith today? What is something we can pray for together, in childlike faith?

I learned yesterday that a family at our church has just received the news that their six-year old son has a brain tumor. The child's name is Lathyn and their site is here. I'm not asking you to give anything monetarily unless you are moved to, but I would ask you to pray.

Additionally, I would like for you to leave something in the comments below that we can collectively pray for.

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  • Matt, Thank you so much for this on a quiet Saturday morning. Thank you for sharing the faith of your son. If you would, please pray for my writing. Thanks.

    • Absolutely Rick. There are people everywhere who need the words the Lord will give you. Press into Him as you write, brother! #Next3Decades

  • Great story, Matt. Your son’s childlike faith is inspirational. My son is only five months, but I am continually amazed at the fascination and curiosity he shows with every small thing in this world. It’s like you said – we have lost our ability to be our authentic selves because of years of pain and stress. Children have a way of reminding us of the simple pleasures and childlike faith we previously enjoyed.

    Thank you for asking how you can pray for us. Please pray for my wife, who has had a chronic health condition for the past seven years. She has also been experiencing new symptoms since giving birth.

    • Chris,

      I just prayed for you. I was curious so I visited your web-site and read the story about your wife. I can totally relate. My wife has suffered from RA since 17 and after our third child she has has thyroid complications. Evey day is a battle, especially “through sickness and in health” thank you for your openness in that post.

      • Robby, thank you for the prayers and for reading more about her story. Much appreciated.

        I’m sorry to hear about your wife and the struggle you have shared with her. I just prayed for you both. I can certainly relate to every day being a battle. It’s not easy being the husband, watching your wife suffer, and being unable to help resolve the pain other than to provide comfort and assistance with raising the kids. While we may not ever know why, I believe God has used our experience to build my character and draw me into His great story.

        • Chris and Robby – this conversation, these prayers. This is what I pray for. Men, placing their feet firmly upon the Rock, leading their families, and willing to steward that in others. I join you in prayer for your wives. Continue to be the leaders God has called you to be.

          • Thanks for your heartfelt prayers, Matt!

  • MommaofFaith

    This made me tear up. A great reminder to live with child like faith. I will pray for Lathyn. 🙂

    UBthelight http://ubthelight.com

    • Thank you so much. You can keep up with his progress in the link above. He went in for his biopsy yesterday.

  • I love the faith children express. One time while we were trying to get the seatbelt unstuck in an older car my adult daughter was visibly frustrated. We had shown the grandkids when something doesn’t work, you pray. So one of them asked Aunt Jess if she prayed. “I did pray.” she responded. And he responded, “No, you need to pray like grandma does.” Went right through to my heart. We can pray about anything, even stuck seat belts. And did God answer our prayer that day? You know he did.

    • Amen Anne! It’s an innocent faith, isn’t it?

      Thanks for the prayerful, shining example you are to your grands.

  • Matt- a belated thanks for your post. I am on a road trip with my wife and trying to catch up on the blogs I read, as well as posts on my own blog. Your young son’s kindness is touching and a good reminder that children often carry greater depth than we realize. The various comments here illustrate the struggles life throws at us, and all our collective prayers are needed. All the best.

    • John, I hope your road trip is a blast!

      These comments are such a beautiful example of the mutual journey we are all on. We must travel prayerfully!