And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” –Matthew 18.3
I’ve always felt, inside, like I’m a young-at-heart kind of person. Let’s be honest… I AM young at heart. I realize I’m pushing 30, but mentally, I feel nowhere near 30 years old. I’ve always had the tendency to see life through rose colored glasses, to see the best in people, the laugh at the little things and have fun wherever possible.
Sometimes that mentality has hurt me and sometimes it’s helped me.
I remember my VERY first job out of college I actually got in trouble for laughing too loudly in the office. I kid you not. I remember thinking to myself, “Welllll… okay. I won’t laugh anymore. Or something.”
And then I remember when I became a teacher, some of the other teachers used to think all we did was goof off in my classroom because my kids and I were always laughing and smiling. It was my goal to make learning FUN! And what fun we had!
I take my work seriously and always have and I’ve always put 120% into everything that I do. But, at the end of the day, I don’t take MYSELF too seriously. But for some reason, this rubs some people the wrong way sometimes and I’ve always had a difficult time striking that balance.
I’ve always questioned it: Do I need to start taking myself more seriously? Do I need to laugh less? Do I need to be less joyful? Should I be more “formal” in my writing?
And every time I start to consider answering yes to one of those questions, that still small voice of God says to me, “But that’s not how I made you. I made you to be joyful. I made you to laugh. I made you to bring FUN into life. I MADE you to make others smile and laugh.”
I realize that being anything other than myself, whether certain people like it or not, is me not being honest with myself or God.
I was reminded of all of this AGAIN recently when I’d submitted an article for a publication. I thought the article was awesome and hilarious and I was really proud of it. But when I got word that it wasn’t a good fit for them, that it was too humorous, and not serious enough… and not “on brand” (ugh, I really dislike that term), I started to question myself AGAIN. I had felt so confident in what I did and I felt really discouraged.
But then I opened up my bible to read that day’s passage, and Matthew 18:3 popped into my head. And I just heard Jesus say to me, “Unless you, Molly, become like a little child, you won’t enter the Kingdom of Heaven.”
Now, that’s not to say that serious people don’t get into heaven… haha! That’s not the case at all… what I feel Jesus is really saying to me (and to all of us) is to just have childlike faith and a childlike outlook on life. To stop taking ourselves too seriously and overanalyzing everything that we do! To trust in Him and His plans for us and all that He has done for us – without reservation!
I look at my nine month old daughter, Lilly. She is SO joyful. She is so adventurous. She has such an honest thirst for learning about everything and anything around her. She knows no different… that’s the stage of life she is in right now. All she wants to do is laugh and giggle and play and learn.
And I’m reminded that that’s exactly how I want to be. I want to laugh, and giggle, and play, and learn. Even at almost-30-years old.
And when I really think about it, I think Jesus wants me to be like that, too.
What about you? Is this something you struggle with? Something you’ve ever thought about? What’s going on for you right now? How can we be more childlike?