Tune in 24/7


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Mechanical or Natural?

One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could touch and bless them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him. When Jesus saw what was happening, he was angry with his disciples. He said to them, “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.” Then he took the children in his arms and placed his hands on their heads and blessed them.

Mark 10:13-16 NLT

Funny how kids understand the idea of relationship faster than the idea of religion.  Makes sense, really. When we were born into the world, it was the first thing we learned. Everything revolved around relationship. We understood what love is as our mothers held us. Our understanding of security began to develop as our fathers picked us up and held us close. We didn't have a religion with our parents, we had a relationship. Whether good or bad, it was still a relationship. 

How odd then that we would approach our Heavenly Father in a religious way rather than a relational way. But could it be that we do this because we have been taught to do so?  If Jesus hadn't been there to correct his disciples when they scolded the parents who were bringing their children to him, those parents and children would have walked away understanding that Jesus should not be bothered with relationship or children. 

Truth is, it's relationship that God desires the most. He longs to draws us close. In fact, that is the very reason Jesus came. He came to bridge the gap so that we can be close to God the Father. If he wanted us to be religious, he would have buddied up with the Pharisees and taught what they taught. Instead, we see him rebuking the Pharisees and embracing the sinners right out there in the streets and in their homes. He also tells us that we can only receive the Kingdom of God if we receive it like a child-- relationally, not religiously. 

God will continually and patiently weed out Religion in our relationship with Him. Ask yourself: Is my conversation with Him as natural as my conversations with my husband/wife or close friends? Does my language get more mechanical or pious when I talk to Him?  We can put a lot of pressure on ourselves in our relationship with Him, but all He really wants is for us to be ourselves.

No comments: