one more for the season

Christmas thoughts brought this to mind today, from my journal a couple years ago:

I think Christmas really emphasizes the contrast between adults and children. The delight and surprise seen in the eyes of children, and the tension and fatigue seen around the eyes of the adults. It's pretty much a cliche that Christmas is a time of anticipation for children, but usually a time of tension for adults. Often, I even hear adults admitting that most of the joy they do find in Christmas is experienced vicariously, though the children.

This is a generalization, of course. But isn't there something to it? Doesn't it have something to do with the fact that adults feel responsible for making Christmas happen—while children simply receive it?

The scripture that comes to mind is Mk 10.15:
"Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it."

I think there's something important in this contrast between adults and children (and not just at Christmas). Spiritual maturity is not about becoming "responsible" or "building the kingdom of God." It's not about becoming an adult, if becoming adult means taking charge, making things happen, managing the world, etc.

It's about receiving the kingdom of God as a child.