Within the context of prayer, as a family, we make an earnest attempt every morning to begin our day with a prayer; and well, as far as prayers go, there are numerous requests that come to my mind to be laid before the crucifix. Sincere attempts I do take not to miss any request and to prioritize the special ones from members of the family and from the circle of friends and then to include the asks on behalf of people who do not ask and for those who cannot. Besides this, there are loads of asks I have which I am sure God as a witness must be busy handling as well including; those un-digestible incidences of injustice and violence we get to watch on the media for a starter. Before long, I have a never-ending, overflowing list of asks filled with applications and supplications.
One day, as we sat down for our family prayer, Rachael, our two and a half year old daughter, noticed a picture of Jesus Christ nailed to the cross slipping out of the Bible; the picture depicted a complete agony of pain and suffering that was visible on His face and the picture lay prominently exposing the violence and injustice He had endured on the cross and the dripping blood from the open wounds that seemed to be instigating the curiosity of the child. She asked with the utmost child-like curiosity who it was and why He was given a 'time-out'. Not knowing if it was the right time to tell a child the greatest story ever told, leaving it to the consequence of the sequence of events that just unfolded, we stopped to tell Rachael the story of Christ who died on the cross. She patiently heard it all.
Towards the end, she asked, "Why did they do that to Jesus?!" to which all I could say was, "Because He was a good Man." and thought I could teach her the rest later. Watching her absorbed with the picture I got up to leave and just as I was about to do that, I saw her rub the wounds of Jesus in that picture and say something repeatedly. I stood still for a moment and listened and heard her say looking at the crucifix, "I am sorry Jesus..."
Hearing that, made me wonder why I never thought of saying so far... "I am sorry Jesus". All that I have been doing was add further burden to the cross obsessed with my supplications and agonized selfish needs. And remembered, Mathew 18:3, "Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven" and was glad I could learn this lesson from a child.