“Why don’t they want him to sing Nonna (Grandma)?” my 6-year old grandson wondered. “He sings good.” He just couldn’t understand why during the Rafe Hollister Sings espisode of the Andy Griffith Show, Mayberry’s mayor and a leading citizen (Mrs. Jeffrie) didn’t want Mr. Hollister to represent their town at a musical event.
“Yea,” added his 4-year old sister, “he sings better than that other guy (Deputy Barnie Fife)!” So I explained that they didn’t like the way he looked.
GRANDSON: “What’s wrong with him? He looks OK to me!”
ME: “Well, they don’t like the way he’s dressed.”
GRANDDAUGHTER: “He looks OK to me. He just looks like a farmer.”
GRANDSON: “And he could always change his clothes.”
ME: “Yes, he could, couldn’t he…”
But all the while I thought…
No wonder Christ says we must become like little children to enter his kingdom.
Jesus called a little child to himself, and set him in the middle of them,Matthew 18:2-4 WEB
and said, ‘Most certainly I tell you, unless you turn, and become as little children, you will in no way enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. Whoever therefore humbles himself as this little child, the same is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.’
And not like the mayor and Mrs. Jeffrie – or me sometimes! Because my thoughts were running along the same line as those of the snooty Mrs. Jeffrie and the mayor. “How could they have someone as unkempt as Rafe Hollister get up there to sing?”
Meanwhile Barney Fife, who had already cast himself as the winner, strutted off to the tryouts convinced he would take first place. Rafe Hollister on the other hand, had decided to enter only because Sheriff Andy Taylor convinced him to. “You think I’ve got a chance?” was his sincere and humble attitude.
Barney embarrassed himself with his out-of-tune singing. While humble misfit Rafe Hollister, with his truly gifted voice, won first place! Listen to Rafe’s singing and you’ll see why he won!
My grandchildren gave me an attitude adjustment that day.
And helped me see why Christ says that if we want to enter his kingdom we must become like little children.
Instead of judging by appearances kids often look beyond, to the heart of the person. And see with eyes of love and acceptance.
My prayer today is that the Lord would give me such a heart.
And not like the snooty mayor and Mrs. Jeffries!
“Preconceived notions are locks on the door to wisdom.Mary Browne