It’s what we all desire, long for and seek after. There are many counterfeit forms of love. In the midst of our choices and regrets, with God's help, we break through guilt, shame and condemnation to find God is love, the whole love and nothing but the love we seek. In our scriptures and devos this week, we set aside our carefully crafted images to return to love. Read them. Pray through them and pass them on to others.
“For God so loved the world, He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
It is as daring and fresh as it is beautiful, that the one attribute of all the disciples is a childlike heart. Being educated is good; being gifted is good; and we should be thankful for the advantages we’ve been given to live life. But, the one necessity is a childlike heart. Jesus takes an uncompromising stand on that.
A childlike heart connects us to God’s kingdom. It’s the connection to the children - Jesus smiling, welcoming the children, giving them access to the riches of heaven. What was it in children that made Jesus say, “of such is the kingdom of God”?
A divine double-take is required of us. Look again at this story, not at the children, but at the disciples’ reaction to the children. Would you have done the same as Peter, John, Thomas and Phillip, in your zeal for Jesus, become annoyed at the smallest distraction?
Children aren’t cute. At least not always, sometimes they can be demanding, short-tempered, sulky, squabbling, stubborn, thankless and selfish. They can be pushed aside because they are weak.
But God works most powerfully in weakness, that’s the point of these verses. When one is little like a child, or poor in spirit, one is more open to receiving the reign of God. Children are more open to receiving gifts.