Who Is the Greatest?
Then they came to Capernaum; and when he was in the house he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the way?” But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another who was the greatest. He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.” Then he took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”
One of my favorite places in Cincinnati is Rowe Woods – part of the Cincinnati Nature Center. I love the feeling that I get when I am there that I am away from the city, from traffic, and am just able to be in the midst of nature and feel and listen and experience the beauty that is God’s creation. I am thankful that my children have also grown to embrace this beautiful place, especially two of the ponds. One is the turtle and fish feeding pond and the other is called Mark’s pond where they can dip for tadpoles, pollywogs, fish, and frogs. Every time we go, there’s a new sense of excitement and wonder on their parts – there has never been a time where they said, “really? I don’t like going there. Can we do something else?” Children have such a beauty within them that shines out, a wonder that they continue to see and experience in the world – whether they have fed the turtles once or 50 times. I think of the welcoming that Jesus speaks of here – I don’t think its just “allowing them” but instead welcoming them as equals, learning from them, seeing the world as they do. One of the things that this photography, Imago Scriptura journey has reawakened within me is a constant searching for the traces of God around us – the places where Scripture intersects with our lives in tangible ways. One of those ways is through wonder, exploration, and play. Its that we can see God in a stack of Lego bricks as much as we can see God in a Jesus action figure standing on a stump in an over-exposed back-lit photograph to represent the transfiguration, or the awe and power of a majestic sunrise over the ocean. So, let us not only literally welcome such children as Jesus speaks of, but let us welcome that in our own hearts and souls that we can re-discover the wonder that is all around us.