Child of God
Matthew 18:3-4 is an eye opening, faith deepening scripture to me. It took me a while to grasp the depth of what Jesus was trying to say here, even though it may seem quite elementary. Jesus is speaking to the disciples who were asking him which of them would be greatest in heaven. Jesus responded to them by saying: “…unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”
So, what did he mean by saying “become like little children?” Think about what a day in the life of a child that's about 2-3 years old. When their caretaker (mom, dad, grandma, etc.) gets them ready to go in the car, do they doubt the ability of their parents to drive? Do they question when the last maintenance on the car was done? Do they become fearful that they may be going somewhere dangerous?
When their mom or dad takes them by the hand to cross the street or walk in a busy parking lot, do they wonder if they are going to lead them to danger? No, most small children naturally take hold of their hand and are comfortable and willing to follow their trusted parents’ lead. I know, I know, there are stubborn or rebellious kids out there that may throw fits or not want to go, but that is surely out of stubbornness not a distrust in the person leading. And surely, there are plenty of adults that out of stubbornness or lack of faith also refuse to take God’s hand. It doesn’t usually work out well for either.
Anyhow, for the most part, when a child is being led somewhere by their trusted caregiver, they just go. When they start talking, they may ask “Where are we going” or something of that nature, but they trust that they are being led safely and securely. God doesn’t mind if we ask questions. In fact, it shows that we want a deeper understanding of His word and His way and He delights in that. Becoming like little children means our willingness to fully extend our hand metaphorically to God, to step fully into faith and willingly going wherever He leads us. How do we know if it’s Him leading?
1. Everything God says will agree with His written word in the Bible.
2. When God speaks to us or leads us, our confidence increases, fear disappears and that still small voice inside of us becomes loud and clear (which is the prompting of the Holy Spirit).
3. We are speaking to Him all throughout our day and sitting quietly listening to Him give us clarity beyond what we would naturally have.
4. We have asked for the Holy Spirit to be given to us and Romans 8:11 assures us that his Spirit lives in you and me! The Holy Spirit carefully leads us through all situations when we ask.
5. Because God creates circumstances that at times are way beyond our normal reach.
Isaiah 41:13 says: “For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.”
Reach out your hand to Him and stay in faith… HE’S GOT YOU! He WILL deliver. It may not be in your time frame, but God is never late! His timing is perfect. His ways are perfect. Things may not always end up the way you pictured or expected, but God delights in surprising us and bestowing blessings above and beyond what we can think or expect. So… trust Him. Trust Him the way a child trusts their loving parents.
I have adjusted my faith to be that of a child. It’s an ongoing adjustment to be honest because it doesn’t always come naturally. It is an intentional effort. I lift my hands in prayer and envision God taking them so kindly and gently to lead me throughout my day. I ask Him to take the hands of those that I love and lead them as well and bless us all with the power of His Holy Spirit. I pray that you will find the courage and faith to become like little children. The freedom it brings is beyond what you could imagine. Relax into Him, He’s got you!
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