Read Matthew 18:1-3
1-3 It was at this time that the disciples came to Jesus with the question, “Who is really greatest in the kingdom of Heaven?”
Jesus called a little child to his side and set him on his feet in the middle of them all. “Believe me,” he said, “unless you change your whole outlook and become like little children you will never enter the kingdom of Heaven. (JBP)
Parents can probably remember receiving drawings or even letters from their young children. The drawings didn’t make a whole lot of sense. That pink blob was an elephant and that blue line was a train. The letters or cards were far from spell-checked and their meaning could be hard to ascertain.
So what did we do with them? Give them back and tell our kids to do better next time or to not send us such things until they made adult sense? Hopefully we did no such thing. We accepted them for what they were: childlike expressions of feelings, of love, of a desire to connect. We did not expect accuracy or even coherence. We just embraced what was offered out of love.
Perhaps that is how God receives our prayers. As our text reminds us, we always come to him as little children and so always fall short of comprehending his ways or getting our thinking straight. Our prayers to him are like childhood scribbles. But just as earthly parents don’t despise such scribbling, nor does our heavenly Father.
If at times we feel like confused and helpless and immature children, that is no barrier to prayer. Jesus told us we are like children, so God is not surprised or disappointed when our prayers are confused scribbles. He not only sees the heart behind the scribbles, he can actually make sense of them.