People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.
I wonder why the disciples tried to stop parents from bringing their children to Jesus. Maybe it had to do with the value of children in that day. Maybe the disciples were trying to guard the Lord’s busy schedule. Maybe only the people who could “make a difference” were given the disciples’ approval. Whatever the reason, Jesus didn’t agree. He called the children to Himself. In fact, He said that the kingdom of God has to be received like a little child. What does that mean? I believe childlike faith has these five characteristics.
- Children come without pride. They have nothing to prove. They come as they are.
- Children demonstrate dependence. They can’t make it on their own. They have to depend on their parents.
- Children demonstrate trust. They will jump off a ledge into their parent’s outstretched arms. They are certain their dad will catch them.
- Children are open and frank. They haven’t learned to hide behind masks yet.
- Children are sincere. Yes, they are sinners at birth. Yes, they will learn the art of manipulation soon enough. But the requests of children are straightforward and genuine.
The faith of a child. It’s not just refreshing; it’s required. Let’s never outgrow our childlike faith.
Father, please keep my heart childlike before You. When it comes to faith, don’t let me grow up. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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