But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. (Luke 18:16)
Father, why do we exchange our citizenship for a work permit? Instead of crawling up on Your lap, why do we run to the fields? Rather than walk into Your presence, why do we try to earn Your favor?
The child inside us cries out. But our grown-up side says, “Hush don’t bother the Father now. He has many other children with more severe problems than you.”
The adversary steps in: “You only come when you have problems. You haven’t done anything for him. So don’t bother coming at all.” And the wheels begin to spin. The hands begin to toil. Sweat beads roll.
Prayer. Intercession. Worship. Bible study. Memorization. Service. Offerings.
And slowly the bag of religious tricks weighs less and less. Until it is empty, and so are we. The Father never demanded a bag of anything.
Only us. Empty. Naked. Broken. Desperate. In need.
He invites us into His kingdom. He invites us into His throne room. He invites us to the banquet table.
The dress? A commoner’s clothes. A cloak of humility. These are the proper garments for entrance to the King’s inner chambers.
The invitation seems to welcome the poor and empty-handed. The warm embrace of the King confirms it, and reminds us that we should have come long ago.
Read Matthew 19:13-15. Reflect on what prevents you from running to God. Ask God to remove those things from your life. Set your heart on God our Father. Imagine His warm embrace.
Father, I want to know you more intimately. I long for your embrace. Help me to draw near to you every day.
Margaret Feinberg is a writer based in Juneau, Alaska. She is author of God Whispers: Learning to Hear His Voice and a contributing writer to both Enjoying God: Embracing Intimacy with the Heavenly Father and I AM RELEVANT.