Message: The disciples asked Jesus “who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” Jesus called a child to him to stand as an example and he told them “unless you are converted and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child-this one is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Typically I have heard this scripture used to emulate a childlike faith in believing, but as I thought this out further I realized there is so much more to this example. A child is under the authority of parents so he is required to obey without question, and a child is vulnerable and completely dependent on his parents for everything. A child has no rights to be able to do anything without the permission of his parents.
Command: Relinquish my “right” to autonomous living. This is not a pick and choose situation. I have to completely submit myself to the vulnerability of obedience at all costs, complete dependent and with the trust that God is for my good even when it is difficult and painful. I have to allow God to teach me, guide me and help me mature.
Promise: My complete childlike surrender is what will give me a place in heaven. Not just my belief, but my belief that is demonstrated by my surrender and obedience.
Warning: I can’t believe and enter the kingdom of heaven without my obedient surrender and dependence.
Application: Lord Jesus, please help me to really grasp the gravity of these words. That my surrender and obedience are not negotiable or just for my good. They are required to enter your kingdom. My life is not my own and I need to live this out without pretending this is an option.