Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Wednesday, April 27, 2016
Today’s Scripture Focus: Mark 10:13-16
We are focusing on sin recovery principle number one of 12: “We admit that we are powerless against sin and thus we cannot manage our lives without God’s miraculous intervention.”
I am among many whose childhood memories are not exactly pleasant. While I will not say that all was bad, there were enough things that happened in my family life and growing up in one of the worst cities in the U.S. at that time that I wish never happened. Old scars are not easily healed. I have experienced difficulties, violence, trauma, and drama. I have been dejected, rejected, disappointed, and undervalued. At the times I was naturally most vulnerable, I suffered the most.
I know I am neither unique nor alone in this. Many of you have dark memories you wish to forget. Yet, interestingly, Jesus taught that we should become as little children if we want to enter His kingdom. I assure you He did not mean to drag us back to the bad memories we cannot control. Neither is He suggesting He wants to necessarily capitalize on the great memories so many others have from their childhood times.
What exactly is it like to be a child, which is worthy of our emulation? Children are vulnerable. We should not hide from God. We should be open and honest even with that which we deem is shameful. He’s a safe place. Children are dependent. We must put our full trust in God, recognizing that we need Him for even our most basic blessings like breathing and being able to function in society (not to mention our sanity). Children are trusting. Generally, when a child wants something, they have no expectation of being rejected. This is why they are constantly asking for stuff. In their minds, it’s almost a foregone conclusion that every desirable thing in the store should be theirs. Should we not trust that God will give us every good and perfect gift? Children forgive quickly. This is why they can have skirmishes at school with one another, and one little thing changes in the dynamic, and suddenly they are best friends again. Should we not also be forgiving when others offend us? Children are quick to call for help when they are frightened or in pain. How quickly do you call upon the Lord when you are in trouble? I think you get the point. God wants us to be humble, vulnerable, and actively reliant upon Him.
If we assume the desirable traits and innocent trust of children, we will admit to ourselves that our strength comes from God and we can do nothing without His aid.