Friday, May 24, 2019
But Jesus said, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.” Matthew 19:14 NLT
The kingdom of the world and the kingdom of God both celebrate greatness. The difference is found in how greatness is defined. While the steps on the world’s ladder of greatness go up—as in “climb the ladder of success”—the steps on the kingdom’s ladder of greatness go down. They don’t go down as in “darkness, bondage, fear, or defeat”—they go down as in “humble yourself under the mighty hand of God.”
When the disciples asked Jesus about who was greatest in the kingdom, Jesus didn’t direct them to the biggest one in the crowd but to the smallest, not to the most successful one but to the neediest, not to the one who had all the answers but to the one who needed to be shown the way. Greatness in the kingdom was identified as childlikeness (Matthew 18:1-5).
As we look upon a little child we discover three characteristics that help us understand kingdom greatness:
Humility- Humility is a disposition that says, “There is no greatness in me.” Little children are not concerned about their status, title, or how much they know. As kingdom people our prayer should be, “Lord, help me to be less so You can be more.”
Dependency- Little children are dependent upon another to provide for them, guide them, protect them, and care for them. As kingdom people we are as dependent upon the Lord as a branch is upon the vine.
Trust- Little children live in simplicity. Life isn’t complicated. They don’t live under a cloud of doubt. As kingdom people we live by faith, and our trust is fully in the Lord.
The song of the kingdom is not How Great I Am, it is How Great Thou Art. Kingdom greatness is found in God Himself—His is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever! Our greatness is found in having the childlike characteristics of humility, dependency, and trust in the Lord that allow us to discover His greatness.
©2019 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. All rights reserved.