Rhema was talking and singing and it reminded me of when I was a child. When everything seemed so clear. My life seemed like it would always be so simple. After all, right was right, wrong was wrong, and I was very free to be who God had created. I didn’t worry about how I came across to others. I was just “me.” I explored my interests, loved the things I loved, and disliked the things I disliked.
How come growing up muddies the waters so much?
It’s so obvious to me why the Bible lets us know that Jesus loves children. I’m reminded today, as I was listening to Rhema, why the Bible also tells us in Matthew 18:2, “ And he said: ‘Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
God wants us to have the heart of a child. Always. Not the immaturity of a child – but the innocent, pure, genuine heart of a child. For children have a way of simplifying life. They don’t make it complicated – they see things as they are.
It’s occurred to me that sometimes we can’t move forward in our lives because we’ve lost something back “there” – back in our past. In our childhood. We’ve forgotten. We’ve forgotten what it means to dream and not care if the odds are stacked against us or not. We’ve forgotten how to skip and twirl just because we’re happy to be alive. We’ve forgotten how to simply walk up to someone who catches our eye and say, “Do you want to be my friend?”
We’ve left behind the ability we possess inside to dream big, love large, and hurt – but then forgive and move on.
We’ve tried to be bigger than our own britches at times, instead of simply humming and enjoying the place God has us in. We don’t trust blindly anymore. We don’t like everyone until they give us a reason not to – instead we size them up the moment they walk in the room… and we judge. We lose the ability to be friends with just anyone. We don’t enjoy life as much because we worry too much and fret too often.
Children have so much to teach us. They truly often are – the smarter bunch. They call a spade a spade. But the thing I love the most? Is how open their hearts are to the world. How giving, loving, and compassionate they are.
Sometimes we sit on the turf God has given us, and we wonder why we can’t move forward. Why we can’t seem to catch a break. We get frustrated over our lack of progress, blessings, or adventures in life. Maybe it’s because we need to go backwards in our past a little bit and reclaim what we set aside along the way? Maybe it’s because we forgot that we already knew how to dream, take risks, believe in the impossible, and love the unloveable? Maybe we need to remember how it felt to pursue life with abandon?
If we want to go forward, we might just need to go backwards a little bit. It might be scary at first – but I think we will find the freedom we’ve been searching for all along as we rediscover how it feels to have the pure and genuine heart of a child.