Out of the Mouth of Babes

This is from several years ago when my kids were younger and I drove them to school daily. I miss those days, the laughter, and the lessons.

Scripture tells us that out of the mouth of babes comes perfected praise. This is related to the idea that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. I think this because babes just say whatever is in their hearts or minds, unfiltered, without reservation or self-editing. We mature adults, on the other hand, filter our prayers to make us sound better, forgetting that God looks on the heart more than He listens to the words. But, that’s a deep lesson for another day. Now, I’d also like to suggest that out of the mouth of babes God has perfected humor.

I pray with my children at night and everyday on the way to school. Some of the most beautiful and heart-felt prayers have come out of their mouths, which is one reason I like to hear them pray aloud. And sometimes they’re just plain funny, especially my son’s. A few weeks ago our Spanish and Portuguese speaking neighbors to the south along with the home of Calhoun and the seat of Southern rebellion were blessed. Nick was closing his prayer. He typically prays a very encompassing prayer. But he often has a unique twist on the God-bless-everyone approach. In his conclusion he prayed, “And God bless South America and South Carolina.” Today, he was even more encompassing in his prayer. Today, the solar system is blessed, in particular Venus and Mars, as he prayed God’s blessing on this corner of the cosmos. You can’t make this stuff up. You just have to enjoy it when it comes. So I smiled inside and said an amen to his prayer.

As a father, on one hand I want to direct him to focus his prayers and think about specific needs of others, as well as his own. But, on the other hand, you never know when out of the mouth of babes God has perfected praise, or in this case prayer, and just possibly the gravitational pull of one of our neighboring planets was intensified because of his prayer just enough to deflect a killer asteroid from a collision path with earth. I’m not out there in space. But God sees all and in His mysteries could have prompted the prayer to move something more than Dad’s face into a smile.

Jesus said not to forbid the little children from coming to Him. Moreover, we must become like a child to enter the Kingdom. Maybe it could be that as I try to focus my child’s prayer with my mature, adult thinking, instead I should listen and learn and expand my own narrow prayers. So, God bless Mars and Venus.

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Stephen W. B. Rizzo

I am a Christian who is flawed but forgiven. I am a father who is blessed beyond measure with two amazing children. I am an educator who is fortunate to get paid for doing what he loves. I am a writer, a budding photographer, and a musician who really needs to practice more.

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