Day 10

Making Room for Children

Psalm 139:13-16, Proverbs 17:6, Matthew 18:1-6, Matthew 19:14, Matthew 21:14-16, Mark 10:13-16, Ephesians 6:1-4

BY Kaitlin Wernet

“Mama, I feel like I’m upside down in a cornfield!”

Maybe this is something commonly heard in motherhood, but since I’ve yet to become a mother, I wouldn’t know. Hopefully, you’re just as confused as I was when I woke up to this statement in the middle of the night. I rubbed my eyes in confusion, as it took a minute to regain my bearings and remember exactly where I was—at the beach, with one of my best friends and her three children.

It was their annual beach vacation, and I’d said yes last-minute to hopping in the minivan for a few days of saltwater and sunshine before the rest of the family arrived. I didn’t have to be a mother to know that a seven-hour road trip with three kids is some kind of miracle. Ours was completed with only one short episode of crying and one small snack-spilling incident. Victorious, we’d tossed aside our sandals and rolled up our jeans at the first sight of ocean. We splashed around in the dark until we could barely keep our eyes open.

Our cozy hotel room was filled with baby snuggles and loud giggles. It was a world away from my quiet apartment at home, and I loved making room for every sweet moment. I was letting the little children come to me and received cuteness and cuddles—a serious benefit—in return. But upon waking up in the middle of the night, the scene was a little different.

A flipped lightswitch signaled that the “upside down in a cornfield” child was awake and not dreaming. Her tiny whimper and the worried look on her mama’s face confirmed the girl’s sudden sickness and strange hallucination. Their hurried footsteps headed for the bathroom, where baby brother’s travel crib was still blocking the toilet. That’s when I remembered that I’d been sharing a water bottle with the sweet, sickly child all day long, which meant I was probably halfway to a “cornfield” myself.

Small things sometimes turn out to be the most significant and, well, contagious—especially when they have hearts that beat like yours and mine. Making room for children is hard because we never stop being children ourselves. We never stop needing our Father. We struggle to make room even for ourselves, only to see that He already has, again and again.

This is why it’s important to make room for the children tugging on our shirts and hanging on our legs even—especially—if they aren’t living in our homes. The parent-child relationship is one of the most prevalent themes in Scripture. Shouldn’t it be one of the most prevalent themes in our lives? We should care for these little ones Jesus loves so dearly. Even when it means getting messy. Even when it means waking up in the middle of the night. Even when it means being upside down in a cornfield.

Isn’t that what He does for us? God knew us when we were formless (Psalm 139:16). He prepared praise from our mouths as infants (Matthew 21:16). He asks us simply to come to Him (Matthew 19:14). May we do the same for others, especially when they are small, for they are not small to Him. Amen.

Post Comments (126)

126 thoughts on "Making Room for Children"

  1. Kim Guge says:

    I am the head of an after school program at my local elementary school. We have 60 kids, which includes 3 with special needs. As the school year begins next week, this is just what my soul needed. It is a stressful job, but the rewards are countless. As adults, we are the examples for those left in our care. But the One we should set our example by is even greater. His light shines through is, even when we aren’t “allowed” to speak of Him. That’s what helps get me through the chaotic days.

  2. Karyssa Schrouder says:

    Prayers please as I have one month before starting a pediatric residency! Seemed apt today to ask for strength loving on kids in often the scariest part of their and their parents lives. Prayers for the abandoned, neglected, difficult, heartbreaking and hard cases I’m sure I’ll face in the upcoming years. Loving this community as I get to share the Word and life with you all from afar. ❤️

  3. Steph C says:

    I struggle with opening my heart to children. I know I shouldn’t. I used to love kids. 7 years into infertility, it’s so much harder to just simply love kids. I am so thankful for God’s love for His children. He welcomes us, delights in us, even though we often stray. Oh Father, help me show true love to children. Help me truly rejoice with friends who announce the news of a new baby. Open my heart to see the needs of others – their needs for love, friendship, encouragement, acceptance. Help me be willing to meet those needs.

    1. Becky Kuiper says:

      Steph, you are in a time of deep hurt. You probably do show love in the best way that you can in the midst of infertility. I remember well those years in my own life, and I now know that He is a God of healing and restoration, and there is wholeness and healing ahead for you. Remain in him. May you be blessed with hope today.

  4. Mackenzie Riley says:

    “For they are not small to Him”
    I needed this reminder today as I go on day 5 of some emotionally draining days with my 13 month old. Seeing my son through God’s eyes reignites the deep love and compassion that I truly do have for him and allows me to fully engage in every moment, both easy and challenging.

  5. NanaK says:

    “Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight–Jesus loves the little children of the world.” There are so many wonderful ways for us to show the love of Jesus to the children around us–through our actions and prayers, by inviting them to Sunday School or a VBS at our church or in our community. And of course there is always a need for Foster families in every state. There are also numerous outreach programs that are spreading the gospel to other nations.
    Samaritan’s Purse, Operation Christmas Child is one such group with whom I volunteer. Millions of shoeboxes are packed with small gifts, which are then sent throughout the world to children in towns, villages, schools, churches…you name it. With each box, a booklet is placed on top that introduces the child to the Gospel in there own language. There are also individuals at the location ready, willing and able to read with the them and lead them a discipleship program called, The Greatest Journey. Here is link if you’re interested:
    Thank you for this wonderful devotion and reminder that although I am just one, I am one, and I pray that I will always be open to be used by You, Lord to make a difference in the lives of children wherever they may be.

  6. Mari V says:

    I work at a school. I am not a teacher. But I work in kids care and a kindergarten program. I love my job! I love these little children! I love that they crave for hugs! I’m sad that we live in the day that I have to be careful. Protect myself. But when one of these little ones comes up to me and just needs a hug, I give it to them. Some of these little kindergartners spend more time with us than they do in their own homes and many times I pray for them and I pray that it be Jesus arms and not mine. They’re SO cute! I love my job! And many times they’re sweet smile and loving me has been a great part of my own healing process.

  7. Rachel says:

    Terri – I think that’s why she said “one of” not “THE most important”. The scriptures today show us Jesus’ view of children, so we should do as he said. Making sure we don’t ignore them, they are loved and chosen by God. We should raise them and love them. We learned that even if they are not ours, they then must be neighbors if we know or see them. And in that case they do fall into your category.

  8. Victoria O says:

    16Your eyes saw me when I was formless;
    all my days were written in your book and planned
    before a single one of them began.

    A reminder that God knew us before we knew ourselves. His plan for us was already set. We all try to control things for ourselves or our children, but we need to step back and trust in His plan for all of us.

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