Are you Listening?

This time of year children anticipate the arrival of Christmas, they are warned by their parents that they must be patient.  Their behavior magically improves because Santa only brings toys and gifts to the good boys and girls.

Christmas Eve is the only night they do not have to be coerced to go to bed.  They retire early, eagerly awaiting the arrival of Santa.  Parents have usually informed their little ones that Santa will only come if they go to bed and are quiet.  That is the only way they will be able to hear the hoofs of the reindeers when they arrival on the roof.  They, of course, fall to sleep in the quiet, dark room while impatiently awaiting the sounds of the hoofs on the roof.

As parents, we, of course, know the reality of the arrival of the gifts and toys, and feel blessed to be able to provide for our children.  There is nothing that can replace the look of surprise and wonder on the faces of our kids as they bound into the room in search of treasure.

We are God’s children he is happy to provide for us,  but it is our option whether we believe and accept the gift of his love and salvation.  He offers the gift not once a year, but if we accept it, He through the Holy Spirit, walks with us as we journey through life.  We, as believers, do not have to wait in a quiet, dark room for the still, quiet voice that guides.  We only have to listen and allow ourselves to be guided along the right path.  Yes, sometimes we stumble, but we are not forsaken, but are lifted up and set aright just as a small child is when they fall while trying to learn to walk.

Do you hear the still, quiet voice in your spirit gently guiding you.  Do you listen or ignore it entirely?  Some call it conscience some call it common sense.  I call it the Holy Spirit guiding me. I personally do not believe things happen in isolation nor do things happen by coincidence.  The more you let yourself be guided, the louder the voice will be as you are guided to a life that reflects the Spirit that is within you as a believer.

May we all strain and train our hearts and minds to follow the small, quiet voice and take the better path.

 

I ask again —  Are you Listening?

Childlike Simplicity

“And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18:3, KJV)

God sees us as His children and therefore wants Believers to have childlike trust, faith, and dependence on Him.  By coming to Him with the simplicity of a child we allow ourselves to throw off the complication of adulthood in a world ruled by Satan.  By developing the faith of a child and total trust, we look at the world without the depravity and mistrust that develops as we get hurt and disillusioned.  As adults we become callous and put up walls to protect ourselves from all those who would hurt us.  It is even harder when those we love and trust hurt us.  For those of us who long ago or who never experienced the joy of an innocent childhood, but were pushed into maturing early and missed the fun and wide-eyed innocence of childhood, the walls are thicker and harder to remove.

But how to throw off the cloak of adulthood and return to the simplicity of childhood in our relationship with the Father? To me childlike simplicity means to come to Jesus not with mistrust, worldly-hunt for a way to get a step-up on the competition, but to come to Him with the wide-eyed amazement, trust and expectation of a child at Christmas time.  The expectation that something good is going to happen.  I remember going into the living room and being amazed at the beautiful tree and gifts under it.  Trusting totally that there was something for me in at least one of those boxes or bags.  As I got older the amazement of Christmas fell away and was replaced with insuring that my children had a good Christmas.  I was taught as a child that it was not all about the gifts, but that it was about the birth of Jesus and tried to instill that remembrance into my own children.  But I cannot deny I always loved seeing the amazement in their eyes when they looked at the gifts under the tree.

Children do not look for underlying motives, they tell the truth without hesitation, take life at face value, are open and free-spirited, trusting, and ready to believe.  They are teachable–like sponges ready to absorb everything put before them.

Recovering the childlike amazement is harder than it sounds.  Especially as overtime we continuously try to force ourselves into the square hole of conformity to the world.  It just amounts to making ourselves fit-in. As we mature and find out more about who we are in Christ, we can no longer feel comfortable continuously trying to fit-in.

Developing the simple life of a child does not mean that you become passive or gullible.  I personally believe that the still quiet voice will guide us on the right path if we listen intently, but I do believe we must be willing to heed the guidance not letting our own feelings, ambition, and ego get into the way.

I know that I will never accomplish change without the Holy Spirit.  I pray everyday that the Holy Spirit will guide me in pulling down the walls that have taken me many years to build and help me to learn and enjoy a childlike trust in Jesus and embrace the gift of Grace.

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The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims His handiwork. Psalms 19:1

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