A couple of weeks ago my friend’s daughter ran into her house and told her mom that she saw a fish fall out of the neighbor’s tree. My friend, at first, did not get up to go investigate. Fish don’t fall out of trees, whatever happened couldn’t be that. But her daughter’s declaration continued to reverberate in her mind until she decided to venture to see what this was all about. She crossed her yard to join her daughter under the tree. Upon the ground laid a fish, fresh, but still, now dead. No one around had been fishing and no practical joke was unearthed. Simply a fish had fallen from the tree. The best explanation I would wager is that a bird had plucked it from a body of water nearby and it fell from its talons through the tree and unto the ground below.
I find it fascinating how often a child will make a statement that adults think preposterous and dismiss as a child’s fantasy when in reality the child was telling the truth. An adult might not be so quick to go running around telling everyone they saw a fish fall out of a tree. But a child is unwavering in what they know to be true without regard to what others may think.
How much do our adult minds hinder us from seeing what is really true because life has taught us such a thing doesn’t happen? We have a greater mental maturity than a child and yet sometimes the child is more aware of what is really true for they tell it as they see it. I wonder if this is one of the reasons Jesus said we ought to be as little children to see the Kingdom of God. It isn’t that the Kingdom of God is some fantasy only fit for children. Nor is it that He didn’t want adults to uncover the truth of its non-existence and so it would be better for them to think childishly. No, it’s that children see what it is really there without preconceived notions of what’s proper or acceptable. They aren’t swayed by what’s respectable to society, but what really is before them.
A child can often perceive the reality of things much better than adults. They lack the fear that holds adults back from accepting something that seems too incredible to be real as reality. Children don’t concern themselves with all that, they just tell you what they know to be true even when a fish falls from a tree.