The Child in the Midst

And he came to Capernaum: and, being in the house, he asked them, What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way? But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves who should be the greatest. And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all. And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them; and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them, Whosoever shall receive one of such children in my name, receiveth me; and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth not me, but him that sent me.
— Mark 9:33-37

In this then, is God like the child: that he is simply and altogether our friend, our father—our more than friend, father, and mother—our infinite love-perfect God. Grand and strong beyond all that human imagination can conceive of poet-thinking and kingly action, he is delicate beyond all that human tenderness can conceive of husband or wife, homely beyond all that human heart can conceive of father or mother. He has not two thoughts about us. With him all is simplicity of purpose and meaning and effort and end—namely, that we should be as he is, think the same things, possess the same blessedness. It is so plain that anyone may see it, everyone ought to see it, everyone shall see it. It must be so. He is utterly true and good to us, nor shall anything withstand his will.

How terribly, then, have the theologians misrepresented God as a great King on a grand throne, thinking how grand he is, and making it the business of his being and the end of his universe to keep up his glory, wielding the bolts of a Jupiter against them that take his name in vain. They would not admit this, but follow what they say and it comes much to this. Brothers, have you found our king? There he is, kissing little children and saying they are like God. There he is at table, with the head of a fisherman lying on His bosom, and somewhat heavy at heart that even he, the beloved disciple, cannot yet understand him well. The simplest peasant who loves his children and his sheep were a true type of our God compared to that monstrosity of a monarch.


by Dale Darling

In being haughty or over humble - manipulative masochism is it? - I am not the child in the midst. "With him all is simplicity....he is utterly true and good - nor shall anything withstand His Will.....heavy at heart that the beloved disciple cannot yet understand him well.

A child may rebel by expressing self-will, but is pliable to doing as the parent does, that which the parent wills, for good, or for bad. The in Christ by faith child-like adult hears and does Thy Will. A child is also emotionally charged, and in that condition not pliant. 

Father, help us know that all things are for thy glory and our freedom.