October 21, 2014

Becoming Childlike

There are days where I'm reminded just how much we adults make this Christian walk and talk complicated. If you want to learn an enormous amount about God's love for you get around kids. Get around lots of kids. And do it frequently.

The greatest joy of teaching is that it's never just a one-way interaction. As much as I think I'm teaching these little ones--though each child is beautifully and wonderfully unique in their own right--they probably end up teaching me astronomically more. They probably will end up teaching me more than any of my adult teachers ever will in the long run.

Days like these I catch myself just marveling at how people so little, so innocent, so inexperienced can be such incredible teachers themselves. And they don't even know it.

Sometimes I want to just hold them in my arms and whisper, "You have no, no, no idea how wondrous you actually are! Your little mind cannot even begin to fathom it." Each one of these are precious and valuable.

Matthew 18 records a remarkable teaching moment:
At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, "Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, "Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. "Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. (verses 1-4)
Clearly there's a difference between being childlike and acting childish (which we're exhorted to put aside as we age--only children are garnered with that kind of behavior for a short while), but here, Jesus is saying to become the former--become childlike.

Children understand and accept things at face value that as adults we loose over time, over the experiences we collect in a fallen world. Children trust. Children get excited over small things--they see the wonderment that abounds all around. Children are rather resilient, and haven't grown as weary yet. They laugh, giggle, create without concern of someone judging their handicraft; they dance and sing without care. If they fall, once their parents pick them back up, they'll keep trying whatever crazy idea they were at before. Children know when they're loved--it's written in their smiles, woven into all that they do.

And this is what God wants us to become to be great! He wants us to trust him. He wants us to get excited and be astounded at the wonder of His creation. He wants us to rest in Him, and not grow weary. He wants us to laugh, giggle, create, dance, and sing. And He wants us to get back up again and keep moving forward even when we fall, we fail, we sin--this is why He's given us grace--why he sent us His own Son. He wants us to know we are so, so, so deeply loved. Our little minds cannot even begin to fathom it.

How remarkable that this is what makes His children great. Are we humble enough to become as such as these? To become like little children? Let it be so.

5 comments :

  1. That first paragraph - yes! We do make things complicated. And why!? Thank goodness no matter how old we get, we keep learning - or that's the hope.

    Glad you're back in the swing of blogging, Natalie.

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    1. ...I don't know how much back in the 'swing' I'll be friend, but hopefully I can stick around a lot more now that student teaching has calmed down a little =)

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  2. Awesome post! Ugh....I can be so guilty of making things complicated and feeling less than if my to do list isn't as long as my arm. Thank you you for stirring my soul to be quiet and childlike. May I choose Jesus over that stinkin' list of mine! :)

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Marci, and the kind words =) Be childlike!

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  3. Hi Natalie! Great post!! I so often over think things - letting doubt and fear creep in - instead of following and trusting God with childlike abandon. Thanks for the reminder to joyfully learn what He is teaching me every day. (found you via your comment over at Life With Joys)

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