Have you ever considered what it means to have the heart of a child? If you have been blessed to have children or to be around children, you can easily recognize their genuine purity; their tender humility and their heartfelt willingness to learn new things. Children are like little sponges soaking up every word you say and learning from everything you do. In their minds, life is still a grand adventure full of infinite possibility and hope. They have not yet been jaded by the world to expect disappointment or to put limits on what they can accomplish in this life. They know that they do not know and as such are teachable and open to new experiences which they wholeheartedly pursue. They are full of life and happiness. They get over upsets and failures quickly without reliving those circumstances perpetually in their hearts and minds. They are active and alive seeking more life and more fun whenever and however they can. Children trust fully and with all that they are. Jesus taught his followers that to really understand and appreciate God’s kingdom and His rule over all, they needed to have the heart of a child.
When I was a child my father once taught me that you must never stand by the window during a thunderstorm and smile because if you did lightening might strike you. I was in adolescence before I discovered this actually wasn’t true. But, as a child I had absolute trust concerning the things my father taught me. I never really gave much thought to my every need being met because I assumed my parents would provide what I needed. In this I was dependent upon them and therefore free to pursue a life of fun and activity without anxiety and stress. All of us have experienced this in some fashion. It wasn’t until I got older and began to listen to the world and its claims that I began to think differently. All of a sudden what was simple and effortless became daunting and full of potential trouble. I learned somewhere and somehow, as we all do, that I was solely responsible to take care of myself. I had to figure things out for myself and assume full responsibility for everything. If things went wrong, as they often did, I had to find solutions on my own or work harder or smarter or better. This is the way of man absent life with God. What Jesus was teaching people was that God is sovereign over all things and that it was His job to take care of people and meet their every need. This is what it means to have the heart of a child.
When children are young they know they are fully dependent upon their parents and they have no problem with it. God’s plan for our lives works just the same. Instead of being dependent upon our parents though, we learn to depend on God instead. Where did we ever get the idea that life was supposed to be lived in perpetual difficulty and struggle wrestling in our minds day by day in how to figure out this problem and how to solve that dilemma? How could we possibly assume that we had the wherewithal or enough knowledge to navigate in a world that is so much bigger than we are? We literally do not control anything other than what we think, what we decide and believe or what we are going to do. The rest is out of our hands. How preposterous, even egotistical is it to think otherwise? The reason people suffer and live such miserable lives is because they have not yet discovered the best Parent, God our Heavenly Father. And God, unlike our earthly parents, is unlimited in power and scope. In other words, there is nothing He cannot do, no need He cannot supply, no problem He cannot fix. Imagine how much your life would change if you no longer had to be your own solution in every situation you faced. Imagine not having to live each day engulfed in fear and worry. Imagine how much freedom you would have to live your life and pursue the things that were most important to you. Most people only endure life and survive life because they have been completely overwhelmed by the troubles and afflictions of life. They have no answers. They accept things as they are rather than how they could be. They believe the world’s “facts” rather than the truth. And the reason they live this way is because they no longer have the heart of a child. They are unwilling to relinquish the lordship of their own lives and are not willing to learn anything new because, sadly, they already know. When it comes to spiritual realities and results we all need to have the heart of a child.
No matter where you are or how long you have already traveled down the path of life it is not too late for you. You can learn as so many others of us have learned that there is a better way to live. God never intended for us to take on life on our own or try to maintain control over thing with which we have no control. Instead He wants us to learn who He is and what He will do. It is not enough to simply believe in God, but rather we must learn how to believe God for the things we so desperately need in our lives. All of the things you have been missing and longing for in your life are still available to you. All that is required is that you humble yourself like a little child and at least entertain the notion that there might be a better way to live. Life with God is a joyful discovery and it contains the answer to every problem you have ever had. Surely you want that life! All you need is the heart of a child and you will find that for which you seek. God guarantees it.
Just some good thoughts…