Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these. Matthew 19:14
The simple fact is that there likely will be more people in heaven who never reached maturity than those who did grow up. We usually have the notion that heaven will be primarily a place for adults, with former children there by way of exception or accommodation. To the contrary; we who grow to maturity on earth will not be more important in heaven. Jesus meant very literally what he said about children, “Of such is the kingdom of heaven!”
It has been truthfully said that this is an adult world, and children are tolerated in it. Nearly all its equipment, customs, and activity are built around adults, and children spend an important part of their life in unfair competition, at a hopeless disadvantage.
There isn’t a more important age of life than childhood. There isn’t a more important thing in the home than its children. Even our all-important daily work is done largely for the sake of the children; and yet they are often neglected for the job. Such irony!
Are our children getting anything out of the daily Bible reading and prayer? What habits in this regard are they developing for their own future homes? What attitudes are they developing toward church-going? Are our divine services on such an adult level that children do not enjoy going to church?
Childhood is for the child itself one of the most difficult times of life. When we think of it as just one long lark we are looking at it through adult eyes. Some of the most painful experiences of life are suffered in those years. Let us never minimize our children’s problems; they are big ones, and not just to them. Let us not minimize their achievements, or fail to understand their problems.