Getting excited – I’ve been tracking a couple of business startups in Africa. Jayston is starting a grocery store in Liberia. He’s a pastor in Monrovia and we use his business plan as an example on our Teacher’s guide page. Dereck lives in Uganda. He and Nyasha are starting an upscale beauty salon in Jinja. Words can’t express how excited they are. Both have strong Kingly ingredients and are very determined to break through the obstacles… and they essentially have. That’s part of why they are so excited.
Like children – Their contagious enthusiasm reminds me of Jesus’ instructions to his disciples to be childlike. It was an amazing prerequisite for entering the Kingdom. That’s important for Kings because before we can expand the Kingdom, we have to enter it! Listen to Jesus’ words:
At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, ” Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” 2 And He called a child to Himself and set him before them, 3 and said, “Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 “Whoever then humbles himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Matt 18:1-4 NASU
Children (and Kings) are naturally excited about new things and they freely allow their emotions to shine through. Their simple approach to life is to pursue the desires of their heart. We should too. There is one key that starts the transition out of plodding servitude toward a Kingly lifestyle; becoming like a child again. Curious, creative, adventurous, fun-loving and playful. We all need to be there and we need to enjoy our life in Christ.
When you get lost – Most 2 and 3 year-olds have little fear of getting lost. They know their parents will reel them back in. Jesus pointed out that children have angels in heaven with an eye to the Father waiting for instructions to intervene on behalf of those children. Here’s the reality – your angel(s) didn’t get reassigned when you got old. God is still watching out for his children. That awareness of His protection under girds our sense of adventure and willingness to try new things.
“See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven continually see the face of My Father who is in heaven. Matt 18:10-11 NASU
What happens if you try something that doesn’t work? Most of us have (that’s why we are so hesitant to try again). The reality is that when we get lost the Shepherd is totally willing to come after us. You’re that important to God. When he finds you there is a celebration in the heart of the Father. He’s not willing to lose you.
“What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? 13 And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off. 14 In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should be lost. Matt 18:12-14 NIV
Kids ask for things – Children are unashamed to ask for what they want. As parents, it is our delight to grant them their wishes if we can. God is the very same way. A big part of our fellowship with him is learning to ask for the desire of our heart. He often shares those desires and we bring joy to His heart to ask and receive… like children.
“Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.” Matt 18:19-20 NIV
So be child-like again and “ask” the Father for the things you want. Don’t be afraid to try something new to bring your request to fruition. And when you complete this simple cycle you too will have something to get excited about… “your joy will be full.”
24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. John 16:24 NIV
Life is an adventure. People are a blessing. God is amazing. We’re winning.