“Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”
It’s a passage usually illustrated by a jovial Jesus with children climbing on his lap – Santa Claus Jesus. In the midst of an intellectual discussion, the last person you want to show up is a child because they’ll want to ask “why?” or talk about things that have nothing to do with the topic. And, maybe, they’ll start drawing on important papers. But the passage isn’t just about children, it’s about how we welcome anyone who shows up and distracts us from what we want to be doing.
Do we take care of whatever they want so they’ll go away quickly or do we see it as an opportunity to learn about someone? So take out a piece of paper and write “welcome” really big and bold. Then add in smaller writing all those you want to welcome in God’s name – all those who may reshape how you understand life. Then take your sign to a public space and see who comes to talk with you.