07 Oct Faith Like a Child
“Then [Jesus] said: “Truly I tell you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” – Matthew 18:2-4
I’ve spent the past few days away from my littles on a girl’s trip and it has had been a wonderful break from the to do list of parenthood for me. But while I’ve enjoyed the chance to get a break, I have missed them so, incredibly much! Nothing has you reflecting on parenthood like time away from your duties. As I’ve reflected on my children, parenthood, and everything in between, I can’t help but to feel convicted as I see their relationship with me and my husband – their earthly parents – compared to my relationship with God – my heavenly father.
When I consider my children, I think of total dependence and complete humility. They know that they can’t do much of anything without myself or their father guiding them. They trust that I will lead them the right way and that I will protect them, even when it’s scary. This is childlike faith.
Now, don’t get me wrong. Sometimes they think they can do it on their own. And, either I’m there cheering them on (or helping without their knowledge) or they learn the hard way. At the end of the day, they are in my arms hearing “I love you”, no matter what they’ve done. They know I will love them, no matter what, and they walk this earth eager to learn and grow and wanting to hold my hand. This is childlike faith.
But they’ll grow. They’ll change. There will be days they don’t trust me. There will be things in life that they’ll try to do without me. There will be plenty of times they’ll walk along, refusing to hold my hand. They’ll think “she won’t love me if she knows about this…” I’ll wonder why they’re questioning my love or wisdom. Don’t they know they can’t do a darn thing to earn my love? It’s their’s to hold no matter what…
So… ready for the convicting part? Isn’t that how we are with our Heavenly Father? How quickly we grow out of that complete dependence and total humility. How often we decide we don’t need Him to get through life. How many times we think “he’ll never love me perfectly or unconditionally”. I hate to say it, but I see myself in my children’s growing pains far more than I see myself in their childlike faith…
Jesus urges us to become like children, fully depending on Him and humbling ourselves (admitting that we can’t do it on our own). He wants us to know that His love is unconditional – there’s nothing we could ever do to earn it, and there’s nothing we could ever do to lose it – it’s ours to hold no matter what. How often am I reminded of His goodness and love (and my pride) as I watch my children grow.
Today, I ask you, what are you holding onto that may be keeping you from diving wholeheartedly into your relationship with God? Are you afraid you’ll never be good enough? (Jesus says that’s not possible.) Are you afraid to trust wholeheartedly in something you can’t see? Has something happened in your life that has you questioning His love for you? Are you buckling under the pressure to try and do it all on your own? What would happen if you decided to leave those doubts and fears behind and step fully into His love, just as a child does? Jesus says that humbly leaping forward in faith and trusting in Him (like a child) is the key to the kingdom of heaven.