“Let the children come to me, and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” (Mark 10:14)
Why are children the standard of measure for possessing the kingdom of God?
Because they can “let themselves go” and fully engage everything they are in embracing the kingdom. They are able to “lose themselves” in the joy of the moment. Abandon themselves in all the wonder they are experiencing.
Children are able to live a carefree life. But why??
It seems to me that it all comes down to one primary thing. Responsibility. More accurately: placing the weight of the world on our own shoulders.
Children are free from such things. Generally speaking, they are safe in the love of their parents. They are free from the concerns about where their next meal will come from. They do not spend a single second worrying about clothing, or shelter, or having what they need to live their lives. All those responsibilities rest with their parents (or the ones taking care of them). With such limited concerns, they are free to let themselves just live… and enjoy life to the fullest. They run and play and take in the world’s wonders – unconcerned about what tasks or obligations they must meet. Little children are free because they are not chained down by anxiety or worry.
That is exactly what Jesus was trying to get us to understand in His “Sermon on the Mount.” There, He says things like this: “Do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26)
Jesus’ conclusion? “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need.” (Mt. 6:33)
Somewhere along the way, we lose a very basic understanding. It is this: when we become a child of God – He takes up ALL the responsibility for our lives (it’s what a good Father does!). Whatever we need… is His concern. Whatever is required comes under the privilege of His provision. He is the One Who takes up the issues of our lives and meets them all… out of the depth of His infinite love for us.
It comes down to this… whatever causes us to worry or to be anxious, or frustrated, or depressed is something that is NOT in His Hands. We have taken it unto ourselves… to try and make it happen, or fix it, or try to meet our own needs in our own strength and resources. We have forgotten Whose we are.
No wonder we are so weighed down. No wonder we spend more time pondering our troubles than losing ourselves in the love of our Savior. No wonder we marvel at the freedom of children.
Jesus came to tell us something really important… He looked at the children and told us a fundamental truth: “the kingdom of God belongs to such as these!”