Sunday, July 18, 2010

Confessions of a Child©

When I read about the disciples I don't feel so abnormal. They walked with Jesus for 3 years in the flesh, yet sometimes they were really clueless. One day they were debating who was the greatest among them. Jesus' response is classic. "Unless you become like a little child you cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven." His words take me back to the early years of my children.

My children wanted protection and guidance. They took my extended hand when it was offered.
They knew they didn't have all the answers. They were inquisitive. They wanted to be taught.

They didn't have their own provision. They came to us to be taken care of.

They didn't try to figure out their lives. They needed guidance to tell them where to go, what to do. They trusted the one who guided them.

When they were in pain, in need, in fear, afraid of the dark, they cried out. They were humble.

They weren't ashamed to come as they were to climb up my lap. They didn't question whether I wanted them near, they just came. They loved to be loved. They loved to love.

They wore no masks. They played no roles, they simply were who they were. They knew their place with me.

They believed. They trusted.

I see it so clearly now that I've lived it so wrongly. It's not just about salvation. It's about my identity. Unless I become like a child, I will never fully enter into the kingdom of Christ which now dwells in me.

At 23, I walked through the door of salvation, with the heart of a child. Immediately I began to live as an adult. I took care of myself. I didn't have a clue how to need. I leaned on my own understanding. The "shoulds" of the law captured my heart and life became about me and what I had to do to be right and pleasing to him. I began to try and sanctify myself by trying to make my "old man" better. I lived from the outside in.

I put on my masks to cover my shame. I played my roles, the ones that gave me some sense of value and fulfilled expectations. I protected myself. I trusted myself. Before I knew it I had forgotten what it looked like to enter in as a child. I quenched the very kingdom of heaven that made it's home in me, yet I didn't have a clue.

At 52 years of age, Jesus is bringing me back around. I am learning how to become a child again.

I continue to come back to this thought. Jesus said He had to leave in order for something better to come. He ascended into heaven. His Holy Spirit descended upon the earth. No longer would I have to experience Him from the outside, He would come to my inside. He would tell me who He knows me to be. He would teach me, counsel me, guide me into truth, leading me through the paths of life. After all He said He leads the blind on the unfamiliar path.

To inherit the kingdom is to live Christ in me. To live Christ in me, warrants the heart of a child that trusts out of a desire to be loved. He beckons me to come out from underneath my masks and be real before Him and others. He invites me to learn how to need again as He waits to take care of me.

Trust is the key that opens that door. Without it I will never believe. Jesus is the way, the truth, the life. He is the way that leads me into the truth that gives me life.

I'm coming back around now to where I once started. I'm learning to trust, really trust. I long to be loved. I long to give love. I have no resources of my own. I need and I need desperately. I have no role to play, no ministry to fulfill. I don't need them anymore. I am learning how to be who I am in the moments of each day with a Spirit who inhabits me.

He has made me new. I am learning what that looks like, living from the inside out with the One who knows the path of life. In this magical place I am rediscovering the kingdom of heaven, Christ in me, is the hope of glory.
©copyrighted: 2010; Julie L. Todd




7 comments:

Karen said... Reply to comment

"The "shoulds" of the law captured my heart and life became about me and what I had to do to be right and pleasing to him. I began to try and sanctify myself by trying to make my "old man" better. I lived from the outside in."...

Oh, that was me, too, Julie...I missed so much of the correlation of being like a child when my own children were young...but as they grew older...and grand-kids came along...I see in hindsight where He brought Me from...and how to completely trust him with every aspect of my life...

Thank you for sharing this great post....

Jo Princess Warrior said... Reply to comment

Just beautiful Julie. I love the picture you paint with words with your own children. It makes me think of the season I am in with my children and how I could learn from their example.

I have been so independant for so long, it is hard for me to trust Him like a child, but I am learning. This is how I want to live my life. xo

Beloved of God said... Reply to comment

What a beautiful post.. God is speaking to me so much about pride right now, and these words are such a timely gift, pointing to the beauty of living humbly! Thank you for sharing your journey!

sparrow girl said... Reply to comment

"I need and I need desperately. I have no role to play, no ministry to fulfill. I don't need them anymore. I am learning how to be who I am in the moments of each day with a Spirit who inhabits me."

This is my favorite part! It's wonderfully freeing to me that it's okay to be needy! And what a joy to give up the roles and efforts and just be oneself in an open and free relationship with His Spirit! Just communing with Him!

Beautiful thoughts, dear Julie!

Love, Sparrow

Amy said... Reply to comment

I loved this, Julie!

This is certainly what has happened with me especially during the past decade...Not having much money has been such a great way to learn how to depend on my "Daddy" to supply all my needs.

Trusting like a child is a beautiful thing...

Hannah said... Reply to comment

Mom,
Thanks for sending me this link. It really makes me think about my perspective of God.
Really good especially with the fun times I am having now.
Love you
Umm ps this is me commenting on you blog :-)

Family, Money and Stuff said... Reply to comment

Hi Julie. Thanks for sharing this. I, too, have been living the 'Old Way' of me - of earning, doing, performing... and am being guided through it - past it into ... faith. Authentic faith that is about Jesus - about God.

Thanks :)