Then Jesus called a little child to Him, [and] set him in the midst of them.
The child in the midst. When God became incarnate He chose to appear on earth as a baby. The sweetest, purest creature that we know in this world is an artless, little child. And this is the chosen symbol of the representative of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord Jesus declared, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3). Who then can ever enter? Who can go back to the comparative innocence and purity of a little child? But note what really happened. The Lord Jesus called a little child. In trustful confidence he came to the Savior, who took him in His arms and set him in the midst. Now note the analogy. He calls. We heed His voice, and so become converted and find a place in His kingdom. The law of that kingdom is love. Its subjects are to show the meekness and gentleness of Christ, hence not to seek great things for themselves (Jeremiah 45:5), nor to sit in judgment on their fellow servants (Matthew 7:1–2). Each one is to act as before the Lord, endeavoring in his measure to do the will of God and to glorify Him, while seeking to cooperate in the fullest way with all true service in which others may be engaged (Philippians 1:27).
Oh, let the reaping of the after-years
Be of the sowing of your patient love
And many prayers.
Look up for strength;
The God who placed that child within your care
Will give you all you need to teach of heaven
And guide it there.
H. A. Ironside, The Continual Burnt Offering: Daily Meditations on the Word of God (Neptune, NJ: Loizeaux Brothers, 1994), 166.