"Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these" - Matthew 19:14 (NIV).
It might seem like a mystery, but it's a simple fact why children would find it easier to enter the kingdom of God. Theirs, unlike lots of adults, is a simple faith.
Here is a good story to explain. When Jesus once came across a blind man, and healed him of blindness (John 9:7), the case suddenly came up to the knowledgeable Pharisees. Interestingly, other than praise God for the miracle, it became a battle of wits for them. "They brought to the Pharisees the man who had been blind. Now the day on which Jesus had made the mud and opened the man’s eyes was a Sabbath" (vv 14). So, forget about the healing, an accusation was now leveled against him. "Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath" (vv 16).
The Pharisees, along with the Sadducees, were religious scholars who had a "know it all attitude"! They were so taken up by their great knowledge that something so obvious could escape their attention, that the God they claimed to be seeking was in their midst. Frustrated by the once blind man's insistence that he had been healed by Jesus, now they turned the tables on his parents, questioning them if the man had even been blind in the first instance. "Is this your son?” they asked. “Is this the one you say was born blind? How is it that now he can see?” (vv 19).
The parents held their grouud. “We know he is our son,” the parents answered, “and we know he was born blind" (vv 20). When even after all pushing they could not have their way, "Then they hurled insults at him and said, “You are this fellow’s disciple! We are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don’t even know where he comes from" (vv 28-29).
So much for their great knowledge. To know and find God one only needs the simple faith of children- and hence why heaven belongs to them!
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I come to you with childlike faith to know you more and worship you, this I pray in Jesus's name.
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“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God”- (Philippians 4:6).
Perhaps you have heard of a certain old magical trade known as mind reading. According to this trade which has been around for millenniums and has its share of tricksters, mind readers are able to discern thought patterns of individuals before they even utter a word. There are places in the world where this, as expected, is a lucrative occupation, with practitioners, often crafty magicians, demanding hefty fees, just to tell thoughts of others.
As Christians, of course, we have an all knowing God, who has said, “Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him” ( Mathew 6:8). Further, our Lord has pointed out, “And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words” ( Mathew 6:7). As Christians when we come to God, we do so with full confidence, that He already knows our needs and will meet them according to his glorious riches in heaven.
Of particular interest for us here is that while God perfectly knows our needs before we even dare utter a single word, still it is incumbent upon us to make our requests known to Him. A parent may have long noticed a child has a need for a new pair of shoes; but it is another dimension, when the child does come out and share aloud that his pair is worn out, hurting and is quite in need of a new one. The parent takes notice, especially when the matter is presented with such conviction and urgency. This is why Hannah cried out to God for a child ( 1 Samuel 1:9-18).
In our relationship with God, as the Apostle Paul advises us, it is not just enough to assume and let matters be, that after all God knows all our needs, but we too bear a responsibility to make our requests known to Him. Once we are done with that, we let God do His part, allowing “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding” ( Philippians 4:7) to flood us.
So, today, do not hold back your needs from the Almighty God. He has paved the way to walk to Him through His son Jesus Christ, to present your case, bear out your heart’s desire, and let Him do His part!
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I rise to make my requests known to you, knowing you have heard me even before I utter a single word, assured that you will meet each and every one of my needs, according to your glorious riches in heaven!