What We Do with our children—and what we do to them—is a worryingly accurate indication of what we think about the world, God, and ourselves. To many adults, children are just a nuisance. But the point is that they're a nuisance (if they are) because they matter. They disturb our organized adult world because they are real people.
N. T. Wright, Matthew for Everyone: Part Two

BLESSED are those who number babies and animals among their friends; in their embodied innocence, such small creatures keep us simple.
Margaret Guenther, Holy Listening: The Art of Spiritual Direction

[T]HE ONLY OBSERVATIONS worth making are those that sink in upon you in childhood. We don't know we're observing, but we see everything. Our minds are relatively blank, our memories are not crammed full of all sorts of names, so that the impressions we gather in the first twelve years are enormous and vivid and meaningful—they come laden with meaning, in a way that experience does not later on.
John Updike, interview with Philip Yancey in Image journal

IT SHOULD BE NOTED that children at play are not playing about; their games should be seen as their most serious-minded activity.
Michel de Montaigne, Essays

ALL MEMBERS of the congregation share in the responsibility of educating and nurturing children. … Christian education of children depends upon adults who actively and intentionally mentor children in practices of faith, and upon the ability of children to have access to and participate in the community's practices.
Joyce Ann Mercer, Welcoming Children

"CHILDREN aren't coloring books. You don't get to fill them with your favorite colors."
Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner

WE GAZE at the future through the window of our children; how we shape them shapes the future. And they will be shaped, by the world if not by us. Each small face harbors the same question, unanswered by self-help books and talk shows. … Who am I and why am I here?
Sallie Tisdale, "Grace," in God Is Love: Essays from Portland Magazine

WHEN WE HAVE CHILDREN, we know they will need us, and maybe love us, but we don't have a clue how hard it is going to be. We also can't understand when we're pregnant, or when our relatives are expecting, how profound and dicey it is to have a shared history with a child, shared blood, shared genes, even humor. It means we were actually here, on earth, for a time, like the Egyptians with their pyramids, but with kids, it's an experiment: you wait and see what will come of it, and with people, that almost always means a mess.
Anne Lamott, Grace (Eventually): Thoughts on Faith

BIRD LEAVES the nest, child leaves the home / It's so hard, this letting go.
Lori Lieberman, "Letting Go"

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