He took a little child and placed him at his side.
Children in the ancient world had no rights, position, or privileges of their own. They were socially at the “bottom of the rung” and at the service of their parents, much like the household staff and domestic servants.
Jesus elevated a little child in the presence of his disciples by placing the child in a privileged position of honor at his right side. It is customary, even today, to seat the guest of honor at the right side of the host. Who is the greatest in God’s kingdom? The one who is humble and lowly of heart – who instead of asserting their rights willingly empty themselves of pride and self-seeking glory by taking the lowly position of a servant or child.
Lord Jesus, your grace knows no bounds. You give freely to the humble of heart and you grant us freedom to love and serve others selflessly. May my love for you express itself in an eagerness to do good for others. (Don Schwager)