I think that we, as adults, have forgotten how to view life through the eyes of a child. Their wide-eyed innocence and purity comes to us like a breath of fresh air… like a flower opening its beauty to the sun’s warm rays.
But, as adults, we sometimes become hardened by the realities of a harsh world. The evening news on Christmas Day 2014 (as told in Huffington Post, “Prankster Gives Homeless man $100…”) showed a brief documentary of what one homeless man did when given a $100 bill by the commentator, Josh Paler Lin. Standing at the side of a highway with a cardboard sign, the poor man must have felt like Lin was his savior when he was handed that much money! He was reluctant at first to take it, but then gladly accepted the free gift and walked away.
From a distance, the cameraman inconspicuously trailed the homeless man as he took the money and walked into town. There, the man promptly entered a liquor store… exiting with two large and heavy bags. The assumption spoken in the video was that the money had been used by the homeless man to buy an awful lot of alcohol. I will admit that I, too, had felt great disappointment as I watched the man enter the liquor store. I, too, made an assumption by association.
But, as the cameraman and Lin continued to follow the homeless man without his knowledge, the gentleman walked directly to a nearby park, set his bags down, and began to pull out packages… which he handed to others sitting around at picnic tables. And what was he handing out? Food. After watching for just a little bit longer, Lin went over to speak with the homeless man. Lin explained what he was doing in his documentary, pointing out the cameraman a short distance away, and then asked the homeless man to explain what he had just done with his $100 bill.
I was impressed and teary-eyed to see a youthful Lin, with hair dyed both blond and black, tell the older man he owed him an apology for his wrong assumptions. They hugged as the younger man shared he assumed the older man had come out of the store carrying two bags full of liquor. Instead, he had learned a valuable lesson from this selfless, older man who carried all his worldly possessions in a bag… and who thought of the needs of others before his own. “You just touched my heart,” Lin told him. It was then the homeless man told Lin: “There’s a lot of people that are just victims of circumstance, and they didn’t go homeless because they’re lazy… There’s a lot of good people that are homeless.”
And I was reminded of this poem I had written a few weeks earlier. May I have the ability to see the world through the eyes of a child, coming to the Lord with a simple child-like faith as I put my trust in His great love. For as Jesus said, “…I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven… And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me.” (Matt. 18:3,5)
With a child-like faith, may I show the world around me the same love the Lord has lavished upon me, a sinner, in need of a Savior…. quite like the homeless man in our story. It was his simple and generous love for his friends which allowed him to share the food he’d bought with the gift he’d been given. He hoarded neither the money nor the food. And in this, I learned a valuable lesson and must ask myself, “Would I have been so generous?”
For isn’t that why Jesus humbled himself to be born into this world of sin, a world far different from the glories of His heavenly home… to share His generosity by coming to us as a newborn babe, to view this world from our perspective, and to save us from ourselves? Thank you, Lord, for loving me so much that you saw my world through the eyes of a little child so long ago.
Wishing each of you, my readers, a Merry and Blessed Christmas!!
The Eyes of a Child
Linda A. Roorda
Through the open eyes of a little child
We see our Lord without the blinders
To know His love as gentle as a lamb
And feel His arms envelope with peace.
The tender faith of one so young
Is a gift from God through eyes without fear
A simple trust with expectant hope
Holding out hands for others to lead.
No guile is found within this wee soul
Whose love is pure like a heart of gold
Who freely gives to others in need
That all may praise and bless His name.
Untainted youth by worldly vices
Pure and trusting are innocent minds
With hearts that see the best in us all
And faith that hopes with unfailing love.
To tenderly hold the hands of a child
And feel secure, encompassed by love,
To view the world through innocent eyes
Is to see the best in all whom we meet.
For judging others is not their concern
They simply believe that all will be well
And though their pride may rear its revolt
How willing are they to forgive when wronged.
Their trusting heart accepts our reproof
When patience is taught by living examples
For character grows with perseverance
As praises true will confidence build.
What would we see through the eyes of a child
Is it pure love that encompasses all?
Is it a trust in those who provide?
And through such faith do our eyes open wide?
Faith to trust Him who holds us through storms
A trusting belief in His loving heart
And with this love to simply accept
He knows what’s best as He leads the way.
With eyes of a child may we see our Lord
The giver of life, bestower of gifts
The One who guides with a Shepherd’s voice
Who lay down His life that we might live.
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"Poetic Devotions" offers faith-based poetry and everyday devotions of praise by Linda Roorda. See more at her site HERE