Childlike Wonder

There's a famous story in the gospel of Mark where you have all these people bringing their children to Jesus hoping He'll lay hands on them. In that moment, Jesus' disciples begin to rebuke these parents and turn them away because in their eyes, these children aren't worth Jesus' time. But seeing this, Jesus is indignant and He says to them “Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the Kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the Kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” And what Jesus was trying to teach His disciples in that moment was that these children weren't in the way of the Kingdom, they were the very picture of what life in the Kingdom was supposed to look like. There's something about the way children move through the world that teaches us the most profound reality about faith...that faith is not something we take hold of by our own strength, but rather something we receive as a gift of grace. Put another way, helpless and needy is the only way we receive Jesus and helpless and needy is the only way Jesus receives us.

And this is the paradox of spiritual maturity...that the more we grow in our faith, the more helpless and childlike we become. This is why our church-wide theme for this next year is "Childlike Wonder." In our world that seems to be increasingly dominated by cynicism and despair, we pray that God would help us recover a sense of childlike awe and curiosity in our pursuit of Him. Our hope is that our hearts would not grow cold, but be tender and open to the movement of the Spirit in our lives and in this generation. To that end, our church will be going through stories in the Jesus Storybook Bible, a children's Bible that, for over a decade, has been introducing children to God's wonderful story of salvation found on every page in Scripture. Whether you grew up with these stories in Sunday School or will be hearing these stories for the first time, our hope in this next season is that all of us would become like children again and discover for ourselves the wonder of knowing Jesus and being known by Him.