I remember observing the same quality in my five children as they grew up. “Mom, did you see that?” It comes naturally.
At one point in my life this desire propelled me in a negative direction. I wanted to be stronger and more popular – so I was a bit of a bully.
I wanted to be noticed – so I tried hard to fit into the crowd – much to my personal detriment.
I desperately wanted acceptance. It seems humans are hard-wired as acceptance magnets.
Fortunately, Jesus knows all about this desire – AND – He says it’s OK – AND – He explains exactly how we can be TRULY GREAT!
In Matthew 18 Jesus describes exactly what it takes to be great
I tell you the truth, [i.e. pay attention]
unless you turn from your sins
and become like little children
you will never get into the
Kingdom of Heaven.
So anyone who becomes
as humble as this little child
is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Wow. I find this soooooo encouraging. Greatness is actually within my capacity. I can be childish. I know I can. I can figure this out. I can be great in the eyes of Jesus who communicated to us the heart of God! Wow.
What best characterizes a child?
- Absolute trust. They are bonded to their adults and they trust implicitly.
- Absolute dependency. They know they need help. Growing up is all about growing in ability, but children recognize they need help from the adults in their life.
- Confidence in their adults. They sometimes ask the impossible with absolute confidence that the powerful people in their life will be able to make it happen.
- Effusive in affection. Babies and toddlers have moments when they will absolutely smother you with affection; Not always, but delightful precious moments.
- Relaxed and at peace in the loving arms of their parent – when they are asleep they are angelic!
- Seek safety and refuge in storms. They know where to turn when they are having challenges.
Jesus says I need these qualities – directed towards HIM, and that is my route to greatness. It’s not a secret. It is simple.
Nurturing this dependence, trust and confidence in my Heavenly Father will mold and re-shape my selfish bent.
My Father wants only the best for me. And I’m not unique – He desires to connect with every single soul – He doesn’t want to lose a single one.
He wants me to walk with a constant awareness of His presence and His desire for my good. He wants to HELP ME ACHIEVE GREATNESS!
Author: Becky Hastings, wife to John, has enjoyed the delightful experience of raising five children and is now blessed to watch the growth and development (albeit from too far away and too infrequently) of four grandchildren. Becky has been meeting with mothers regularly for over 30 years and blessed to have the privilege of watching a lot of children in action.