Yesterday at our library’s used bookstore, I found a vintage book called Life’s Greatest Treasures: Writings About Discovering and Cherishing Children which was published by Hallmark in 1968. I bought it for my daughter Mary, who is expecting her first baby, a little boy named Jacob, in June. Meanwhile, I browsed through it for quotes to share with you. In light of my recent posts about child abuse, I picked ones which highlight the dignity and worth of each child, and how we must treat them with tenderness and delight. I hope they will be an inspiration to you as they were to me.
Among the thousands of tiny things growing up all over the land, some of them under my very wing watched and tended, unwatched and untended, loved, unloved, protected from danger, thrust into temptation among them somewhere is the child who will write a great poem that will live forever and ever, kindling every generation to a loftier ideal. There is the child who will write the novel that is to stir men’s hearts to nobler issues and incite them to better deeds. There is the child who will paint the greatest picture or carve the greatest statue of the age; another who will deliver his country in an hour of peril ; another who will give his life for a great principle; and another, born more of the spirit than the flesh, who will live continually on the heights of moral being, and dying, draw men after him. It may be I shall preserve one of these children to the race who knows? It is a peg big enough on which to hang a hope, for every child born into the world is a new incarnate thought of God, an ever-fresh and radiant possibility. ~~Kate Douglas Wiggin
A Prayer for New Parents by James Keller
O Lord, give us the wisdom —
To deal with our children as You would,
To see in each of them Your Holy Image,
To develop in them a Christ-like love of all men, not only a select few,
To teach them to be go-givers rather than go-getters.
Oh God, in training these dear ones whom
Thou hast entrusted to our charge, help us —
To encourage rather than discourage them,
To discipline with kindness not softness,
To guide them intelligently, not blindly,
To coach, not scold; to nudge, not nag.
Dear Lord, above all, help us —
To use common sense in regard to their future,
To let them go gladly when the time comes,
To let them lead their own lives while following them with our love,
To pray always that they will be close to Thee,
not only for the few years of this life
but for the endless years of eternity.
A baby is God’s opinion that the world should go on. Never will a time come when the most marvelous recent invention is as marvelous as a newborn baby. The finest of our precision watches, the most supercolossal of our supercargo planes, don’t compare with a newborn baby in the number and ingenuity of coils and springs, in the flow and change of chemical solutions, in timing devices and interrelated parts that are irreplaceable. ~~ Carl Sandburg
God sends children for another purpose than merely to keep up the race – to enlarge our hearts; and to make us unselfish and full of kindly sympathies and affection; to give our souls higher aims; to call out all our faculties to extended enterprise and exertion and to bring round our firesides bright faces, happy smiles, and loving, tender hearts. My soul blesses the great Father, every day, that he has gladdened the earth with little children. ~~ Mary Howitt
What are your favorite quotes about children? Leave a comment below!