Lessons from the Heart of a Child
What lessons can we learn from the Heart of a Child?
I spend lots of time with children, both at home and at work. I have learnt lots from them over years and discovered that their perception of the world is quite different from ours. Interested in sharing in what I have learnt from the heart of a child, and how it relates to our Christian life? Keep reading…
The child’s heart is full of innocent faith
From birth, the child believes that everyone who takes care of him loves him. Look at the way a little baby looks at his mother with love – he believes that this person who is holding him and cuddling him loves him and will always be there for him. As children grow older, they continue to believe that their parents, teachers, and older relatives care for them.
How did Jesus use children as an example?
Mark 10:14-15 ‘When Jesus saw what was happening, he was angry with his disciples. He said to them, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children. I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.”’ (NLT)
Why did Jesus receive the children so readily? Because he knew what was in their hearts! By now, word had spread about the Teacher who was going around speaking words of wisdom not heard before, and the children must have been curious to see and hear this man. When Jesus saw them, he knew that they wanted to hear him speak, and they were ready to receive his words, unlike the other people around. That is why he said, “anyone who does not receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it”.
I want to pose a question to all of us. Why are we always ready to hear what the self-help gurus, business moguls, top entrepreneurs and motivational speakers have to say, and not the words of Jesus? Why are we always so unwilling to listen to God, yet his words are simple and easy to understand? What happened to the innocent faith that we had when we first received Christ? Friends, you and I need to get back to the place of innocent faith – the place where we believed that the words of Jesus were more important than all the voices around. We need to accept Jesus and his words of wisdom with the heart of a child.
The child’s heart needs direction
I have always found it interesting how a little child looks very innocent after committing a crime. As I ask the question, “who did it”, the eyes become bigger, the smile wider, and the eyelashes flutter in total innocence. At this point, I realize that this innocent face before me is the perpetrator of the crime, and in need of some direction – the heart of a child ‘asking’ for discipline.
The Lord views us as his children, his beloved children for whom he paid a steep price. Sometimes, however, we go astray and do things that do not please him, so the rod of correction is necessary. The verse below describes how God, our father, feels about us and why he needs to discipline us.
Proverbs 13:24 “Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.” (NLT)
As painful as discipline is, it is part of God’s love for us. He wants us to be perfect in his sight, and to walk in obedience to him all the time. What should our attitude be during a period of discipline? Should it be like that of a defiant teenager or an innocent child?
Proverbs 3:11-12 “My child, don’t reject the Lord’s discipline, and don’t be upset when he corrects you. For the Lord corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights.” (NLT)
Here is a similar verse…
Hebrews 12:5-6 “And have you forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you as his children? He said, “My child, don’t make light of the Lord’s discipline, and don’t give up when he corrects you. For the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child.” (NLT)
From the verses above, it is clear that my attitude during the season of discipline should be one of acceptance, and understanding why the Lord is doing what he has to do. He loves us, delights in us and accepts us as his children. It is only right, therefore, that he disciplines us when necessary.
Back to the little child. Though he doesn’t want to be disciplined, he understands that he did wrong and there are consequences. A loving parent will also understand that the discipline is necessary, though unpleasant. Once the ‘session’ is over, both parent and child hug and continue with life, with the lesson firmly entrenched within the child’s heart.
In the same way, once God’s discipline comes to an end, he embraces us, reminding us of his love. Let us all endeavor to take in the Lord’s discipline with the heart of a child.
Friends, all God wants from us is to love, accept and receive him the way a little child would. In his presence, we should adopt the heart of a child, ready to hear from his father and receive his love.
Hi, everyone! As always, I would love to hear from you. Let me know what stood out for you in this article, and what comments you may have. If you loved the article, please like it, share it with your friends and subscribe! See you next week! Alison