Like a Little Child
by Sharon Betters
but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 19:14 ESV
Susan’s frantic phone call to my husband Chuck terrified us. She didn’t know what to do for her husband, John, who gasped for air in the throes of a heart attack. Chuck quickly called her family members and then we rushed to Susan’s home. We arrived along with the ambulance. John’s faint breaths and closed eyes told us that there was little hope of survival. Chuck and I were in our late twenties and outside the death of Chuck’s own dad, we had little experience in knowing how to comfort our terrified friends. Susan jumped into the front seat of our car and I sat in the back, holding her hand as Chuck kept pace with the ambulance. Suddenly, Susan started singing an old hymn that expressed trust in her Lord even when certain calamity loomed. Tears washed our faces as a supernatural peace filled our hearts, that though we knew our dear friend was dying, the Lord would not leave Susan without His comfort and strength.
This dear woman taught me about childlike faith on that race to the hospital. Her default mode drove her to the heart of Jesus, when life crashed down. Like a little child, she ran to her Father, reminding herself through song, that He is sovereign and she could trust Him.
Unbeknownst to her, Susan schooled me in her own agony. When filled with fear, she turned to the One Who told her to fear not, and to trust Him in the darkness.
In Matthew 19:14, Jesus says “Let the little children come to Me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” Growing up I interpreted these words to express the value of children. Then later in life, I concluded they described a childlike faith required for salvation. I believed Jesus meant that it is only through childlike faith that we experience forgiveness of sins. However, the longer I am on my life pilgrimage, the more I understand that becoming like a little child in my relationship to my Heavenly Father opens a priceless pathway to peace and contentment. Jesus not only calls us to childlike faith in salvation, but in all of life. The more dependent on Jesus I am, the more comfort, peace and joy I experience, even in the middle of chaos. Often, we don’t realize this until life happens. Helplessness creates a pathway to strength in Him. This week we focus on how we experience more of Jesus when we run to Him, just like a terrified little child runs to his father. Jesus showed us what dependence on our Heavenly Father looks like by the way He interacted with God on His earthly pilgrimage. I pray His example tenderly draws you into His strength, no matter what your pathway. Invite your friends to join us on our pilgrimage fueled by hope!
Treasured by Him,
Father, You hold your children tightly in Your grip, no matter how hard we struggle to run away. What a priceless demonstration of Your love. May we learn more every day of how to surrender to Your love and trust You as our faithful Father.