Doug McHone (Coffee Swirls)
Matthew 11:25-26 (NIV): At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.”
There are a few references to children in the gospels, always showing them to be the standard that we are judged by. Why is this? What is so special about children that we should take note of their attributes and apply them to our lives? To gain a measure of understanding, let’s take a quick look at what it means to be a child.
Children come into the world with nothing. No preconceived notions, no possessions, no expectations, no self-reliance, no anything. The first thing a child does is not even their own act. They are born into this world and are, in most cases, caught by a doctor lest they fall to the ground. Shortly thereafter, they are cleaned up and have the initial bonding experience with the mother who has carried them all these long months. From the very beginning, they rely on others for their security!
The first years are all about learning the loving boundaries of their parents and discovering that these barricades are there, not to quench their joy, but that their happiness may be complete. They learn to crawl a bit, which sometimes leads them into more trouble, but that’s what happens when they move independently of their parents, isn’t it?
And then comes the walking. Before the soles of a child’s feet has any callouses or firmness, they are unsteady. They walk awkwardly and oh, so gingerly. And when their parents praise them for taking those brave steps, you can see the joy welling up from their hearts! They may say they want a treat or a toy, but in their actions you can see that their true desire is the praise of their parents. What have they done to earn this praise? They have progressed in their growth that will make them resemble their parents. They know this instinctively and try to heighten this sense. One common way to emulate their parents prematurely is a game of dress-up. My son wears my shoes around the house sometimes, and that is all that he is doing. As he wears my shoes, he doesn’t walk very well, but I can see the underlying motive behind it.
The joy of a child when they see the happiness of their father is another point to make here. If you have ever returned home and seen the face of your child pressed in the window in expectation for you, you can see where I’m going here. You get out of the car and head into the home, and there’s a loud yell from the next room, “Daddy!” You barely have time to crouch down and the child collides into your arms with a hug of joy and excitement. That is how we are to wait for our face-to-face introduction to our Father in Heaven.
So when you look at the verses of the Bible that tell us to be like children, you can see that this commandment has nothing to do with becoming immature, but has everything to do with lessening our self-importance to magnify our reliance on our Father for everything. We need to rely on Him for our every need, from our desires to very lives! As we rely on our Father for our wants and our needs, we will find that we are not ever disappointed. Our needs are met, each and every one. Our wants are all met, for the things we want cease to be the material things and the lusts of our hearts, but we crave the discipline, the relationship, the growth and the security that come from a close bond with our Father.
Doug McHone is the brother who runs (Coffee Swirls) where he constantly shares omething of God speaking in his own life. He is featured here offering up worship to God in this series called The Riches of Christ. Every now and then another brother or sister will make an appearance on the Archive offering up worship in this series. -r