Like a child

by Rev Jason Phua

Readings: Mark 10:13-31; Psalms 119:153-176

READ (verse/s chosen for meditation)
Mark 10:15 “Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.”

As the parents brought their children to Jesus and the disciples rebuked them; Jesus used the situation to illustrate another object lesson. The object lesson that those who does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it. What does this mean? Does it mean that the followers of Christ must act like a child? The interpretation of such a verse seems to come immediately in verses 17-22 where a question was asked: “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Here a grown man (not a child) was asking how he can enter the kingdom of God, which is rather similar to inheriting eternal life. Jesus’ answer to him was that he needed to give up what he highly treasured on earth so that he can faithfully follow the “Good Teacher”. Otherwise, even following the ten commandments would not do any good. In other words, to enter God’s kingdom, Christians need to have child-like faith. The child-like faith to obey as the Lord calls. The child-like faith to abandon what is necessary in order to stay even closer to the Lord.

I had a glimpse of such child-like faith in my son Ezekiel. When he was four years of age, a friend of ours gave him a rather generous ang pow for Chinese New Year. We asked him what he would like to do with the ang pow, he said he would like to give everything unto the Lord. To make sure we were hearing him correctly, we asked him again: “Everything?” “Yes, everything”, he said.

My wife, Belinda, and I were deeply ministered by his love and faith for the Lord. This was because at that time, we were struggling financially as I was just starting to work full time in church while Belinda stay home to look after our children. We have to scrimp and save in order to provide well for the children to have at least some healthy meals. Yet, it was at such a time when the Lord used him to remind us to trust in his heart and indeed, to have child-like faith in Him. Indeed, how can we be a part of God’s kingdom if we do not trust Him? How can we inherit eternal life if we would not cling on to Him but to cling on to what we can see with our eyes? For He is the Lord Almighty and when He say He will do it, it shall be done.

Lord, thank you for the reminder that I need to walk with You and serve You with child-like faith. This is so that I can find true peace and rest in You even when the storms are blowing from all directions. Amen.


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