A few years back I was released from teaching Gospel Doctrine and called to primary. I remember the first sharing time I gave. I was teaching them about faith from Alma 32. I had them stand or sit every time I read the word "seed." Then I asked, "What is the seed Alma was talking about?" The children piped up:
I laughed and thought, "I am not in Gospel Doctrine anymore."
I have to admit, I have missed Gospel Doctrine and digging deep into the scriptures with other adults. It has taken me awhile to adjust to the simpleness of primary. And then there is that one profound answer given by a believing child and I am smitten!
When asked, "Who is the greatest in the kingdom?" Jesus draws a little child into the circle and says, "Whosoever humbleth himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
Children are humble. They are innocent and believing. Their desire to love and be loved is contagious and a testament to me of what Christ truly means by this statement.
And then Jesus says this, "Whoso shall receive one such child in my name receiveth me."
What does it mean to receive a child and how do we do that?
Receive: to accept; to take as due or reward; to allow, to hold, to retain; to admit, to welcome.
We receive children by accepting them, welcoming them, loving them, holding them dear. In doing so, as the verse says, we receive Christ.
In Mark we have some clarification of what that means, "Whosoever shall humble himself like one of these children, and receiveth me, ye shall receive in my name And whosoever shall receive me, receiveth not me only, but him that sent me, even the Father."
Not only do we accept Christ when we receive a child, but we also welcome our Father in Heaven into our lives.
And it gets even better! Going back to Matthew we read, "Except ye be converted and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom heaven."
So...We receive a child and thus receive Christ. In doing so we receive the Father also. And if we receive such with humility, we receive the kingdom. Isn't that amazing!? Receiving all that the Father hath begins with a child (at least, that's how I look at it)!
After reading these verses and putting the pieces together, I have a newfound love for my calling - - both in church and as a mother! I believe the Lord knows what He's doing. He knows where to place us and when. He knows our hearts and the lessons we need to learn. Though it's taken me too long to admit, I am grateful to be in primary where I can learn to in simple yet profound ways how to receive the Savior in my life.
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And it came to pass that he commanded that their little children should be brought. So they brought their little children and set them down upon the ground round about him,
and Jesus stood in the midst; and the multitude gave way till
they had all been brought unto him.
And it came to pass that when they had all been brought, and Jesus stood in the midst,he commanded the multitude that they should
kneel down upon the ground.
...and he said unto them: Blessed are ye because of your faith. And now behold, my joy is full. And when he had said these words, he wept, and
the multitude bare record of it, and he took their little children, one by one, and blessed them, and
prayed unto the Father for them.
And when he had done this he wept again;
And he spake unto the multitude, and said unto them:
Behold your little ones.
- - 3 Nephi 17:11-13, 20-23 - -