Perfected Praise

child praising God“Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have perfected praise.” (Matthew 21:16)

One day a little boy with perpetual wind tossed curls sat upon the ground. Like small tykes like to do, he grabbed a handful of grass and flung it skyward. With an uplifted head, he watched the grass blow to and fro falling carelessly to the earth. He smiled a big smile and sent another handful into the air. I refer to it as the ‘greatest sermon ever preached’. At that moment, I knew – K-N-E-W – God did exist! All my little godless theories and philosophies went belly-up. The kid’s sermon brought me to my senses.

That little boy was my son. And indeed, his sermon started this jaded prodigal on his way home to the Father. Nearly three decades later his son, a mini-me of his dad, inspired his grandfather to draw ever closer to God. My then year-old grandson and I found our own place of worship. The beautiful child led each service. I would carry him up our lane, and he learned to point where to stop beneath the neighbor’s maple trees. Even in the heat of summer an ever present fresh breeze welcomed us and moved his curls. He giggled as he touched the low hanging leaves. There I would tell Him about our Awesome God and Creator. He talked in toddler language as we looked up through the trees at the blue sky. We listened to the bird’s sing, and he looked into my face with such delight in his eyes. He was responding to God’s glory in creation. And in his innocence was found perfected praise.

Jesus responded to His jaded critics when they indignantly complained about the children in the temple offering Him praise. He referred them to Psalm 8: “O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Your name in all the earth, who have set Your glory above the heavens! Out of the mouths of babes and nursing infants You have ordained strength, because of Your enemies, that You may silence the enemy and the avenger.” (vs. 1-2)

There is nothing that can stand against the strength of a child’s worship. Nothing but silence can dispute their praise. We would all do well to follow their lead, seek to become like them, and move from glory to glory into the life of perfected praise.

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