"I was thinking..."
I was thinking…Pastor Steve
"He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 18: 2 – 4 (NIV)
My, oh, my…2022. That seems to be a really big number. I don’t know why but it seems different to me this year. Twenty-two years since the new century began, can you believe it? It really wasn’t that long ago, was it? I don’t feel twenty-two years older…do you realize that there is a whole new generation that has been born since then!? UGH! Old…you’re only as old as you feel, right?
Maybe that’s what Jesus was getting to in the Scripture above, that we need to remain young, that we need to humble ourselves like a child. Sometimes, we act old and get stuck in our ways, and we don’t want to change. We have to be pliable, especially when it comes to Jesus. If we are stiff, we won’t allow the Holy Spirit to work within us and let Him guide us.
What is it about children that makes them so, so…trusting? Well, they haven’t been around as long as we have and haven’t been burned by people they trusted. As adults, we can become cynical. We’ve seen how we bought in to this or that program, ministry, organization, person, or group only to find out they were skimming off the top, were involved in criminal activities, or were just failures in getting the job done. But kids, they take people at their word, don’t they.
Do you remember some of the first times that you were let down by a promise the other party didn’t fulfill? Stinks, doesn’t it? Sometimes, we’ve made promises to our family and work or other situations came up unexpectedly. We weren’t able to come through on that promise, and we felt terrible about it. We try to make it up to them in other ways, but it’s just not the same.
Jesus honors those who come to Him expecting that He will fulfill His side of the bargain. By placing our full faith and trust in Him, we show the world that there is a difference, that even though others will fail us, we know that He will not. Yes, Great is Thy Faithfulness just came to mind.
“Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father, there is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not; as Thou hast been, Thou forever will be.
Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness! Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided. Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me.”
Children realize this already and are very open to trusting. Sometimes, we need to be more trusting, open ourselves up to being hurt now and then, and allow ourselves to be vulnerable. That doesn’t mean we look for ways to be taken advantage of, but we continue to give with the heart that Jesus has given to us. Then, it’s on them to whether they use what’s been given or not. It’s on them, not on us. Don’t allow skepticism to stymie your faith in Jesus. Continue to trust that the Holy Spirit will give you urgings here and there to support people and organizations in need. Don’t hold onto things with a tight fist but with an open hand. It takes practice, but we are a work in progress, and that’s one of the things He will work on…if we let Him.
So, keep the Faith and may each of you have an even better 2022! We can pray that everything will calm down and peace will win out. Either way, God bless and have a blessed New Year!