“Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children. I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.” (Mk 10:14-15 NLT)
Down through the years I have had many people ask me – What will we be like in heaven? Will we recognize one another? Will mom still be mom and dad still be dad?I personally believe that we will recognize each other in heaven; although, I’m not sure that we will still maintain the same kind of relationships we had here on earth. Instead of being moms and dads, sons and daughters – we will be brothers and sisters and God will be our Father.
In today’s passage of scripture we also see that we will be like children. Christ is not saying that we’ll all be age six. Instead He is telling us that our perspective of things will be much like that of a child. What is child-like faith? Let me suggest three possible ingredients:
- There is an absence of all pride and boasting. The Bible uses several words to describe the various ages of children. There is one word that refers to children of all ages. There is another word that speaks of children up to their early years in school. Still there is another word that refers to late childhood and early youth. But the word Christ uses refers exclusively to little children. Children, who are still very small, often have an innocence about them that is superior to everything else here on earth. According to Jesus, that’s a part of what we will be like in heaven.
- There is total trust and dependence. At the heart of every sin is the issue of pride. “I will – I want – I think – I deserve!” Such selfishness and self-centeredness puts us at odds with God. But in heaven, all of that will be removed. The children of God’s Kingdom will put their total dependence in their Father and trust Him for everything.
- There will be the desire to please others. I still have several cards and notes my girls made for me when they were little. Some words are spelled wrong and the artwork will never be displayed in a public museum; yet to me, those handmade cards are worth more than a Rembrandt! Everything about them says, “I love you” and captures my heart. In heaven, we will openly and unashamedly show such love to our heavenly Father. Though our praise may be child-like in comparison to the angels, it will no doubt be some of the sweetest music our Father has ever heard.
The opportunity for Jesus to spend some time with these little children must have been for Him – a piece of heaven here on earth. I’m sure that at times, He must have grown so weary of the Pharisee’s pride and the disciples’ constant rivalry. No wonder He became so upset when His disciples tried to chase the children away. Not only were they depriving the children of His blessings, they were depriving Him of theirs as well. “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children.” Maybe the greatest thing you and I can do for the Lord today is to act more like His child.