"I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." Mark 10:15
"Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” Luke 18:17
Then he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." Jesus answered him, "I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise." Luke 23:42-43
Today I had a huge “Ah-ha” moment. I finally began to understand what Jesus meant when he said we have to be like little children in order to enter the kingdom of heaven. As we were explaining to our kids why Easter is such an important day for Christians and how it defines Christianity in a way that no other day can, trumping even Christmas (“because followers of other religions know Jesus was born and lived here on earth, they just don’t believe the resurrection”) I started to laugh. How crazy do we sound? The very idea of someone dying, being killed no less, and then a few days later rising from the dead, visiting his friends and spreading the good news of God; telling us to go out and do the same, and then finally ascending into heaven because oh yeah, I forgot to mention, He was in fact God here on earth….I will admit, I have often felt like asking, “Really God? You gave us these magnificent brains and you expect us to believe that? You think we are THAT gullible? What do you think we are, children?” Jesus might as well be the Easter Bunny!
And therein lies the very point of having faith like a child. You see, children have no problem believing with all their hearts that there is a super special rabbit, a bunny like no other bunny, one that defies logic every hop of the way; a magnificent, almost magical creature that not only CAN leave them plastic eggs filled with all sorts of goodness, but that WANTS to do it as well. They can believe that. And even in their questioning, they'd bet their lives on it being just so.
All God is asking, is for us to be like children, to suspend our understanding of the laws of nature for just a moment and believe that all things are possible by way of the Creator. If, as Aidan said the other day, a creator is more powerful than their creation, then we can rest assured that God, as our Creator, can do whatever He DARN well wants to do, the "laws" are His to break. And, with that great power, fueled by His love for us, He chose to show us a better way, a more loving way, a simpler way to live out the lives He gave us. He sent us a perfect human example; said, “I am the Way” and “Follow Me.” And asked us to bet our very lives on it being just so.
Children have no problem looking past the truths of reality to believe in something awesome. They don’t have all the answers to the how or even the why, but even in the midst of suspicion they sure as heck are not willing to throw out the what and all the good tidings that come with it. And they certainly reap the rewards. The chocolate smeared faces and glowing smiles this morning tell me that at the end of the day, they really don’t care what the details are, they are just glad the Easter Bunny remembers them, whoever he or she might be. Given the questions they have asked, I don't know that they fully buy into all the details they imagine or have heard about the Easter Bunny but they do know one thing: on Easter morning, they will awake to something special, (encapsulated in little candy eggs). They will have been remembered and will know they are loved: a beloved child of our family.
How much greater is our reward for living without all the answers and still keeping our faith, like a child? I am not suggesting we forfeit our God-given (perhaps even God-driven?) ability to explore the deeper meanings, the historical facts, to critically think through and ponder the questions that arise. I don’t even suggest that we throw out the doubting Thomas lingering in our own hearts but instead embrace him, love him, and lead him to the grace that we know to be true, that we have seen and touched with our own lives, time and time again. And at the end of the day, at the end of our earthly walk, we too can smile our messy smiles and say, “Thank you Easter Bunny” and know that some”bun” loves us, too. So much....so much that He was willing to give up everything for us: God's beloved children.
He died. And yet He lives. And, regardless of the details, that is good enough for me. Actually, it’s good enough for all of us.
Thank you Easter Bunny!
This has to be one of the best and most profound of your posts. I think you have absolutely hit the nail on the head with the biblical quotes you've related to us this week. We must be child-like and open to God whom I equate purely with LOVE, to walk in the spirit. I think this is one to be framed and put up on a wall someplace because it is truly the most accurate explanation (and yet so very simple) to understand from this description. Happy Easter...your family is getting lovelier every time I see them. Much Love, DawnReplyDelete
Thanks Dawn. Oddly, this post kept coming into my head over and over yesterday and I knew I had to write it out but somehow, I still don't know that I captured the whole essence of it. We'll see. Maybe one day I will get it written the way it swells in my head, it's like tides rolling in, and then out again! And of course, I spent all day wishing people Merry Christmas rather than Happy Easter....oops. :)ReplyDelete