Have you ever thought of yourself as a child? Perhaps your answer is "Yes, I was a child, but I'm all grown up now." Oh wouldn't it be wonderful if that was the case!! The all grown up part anyway!!
When I think about this one of two things come to mind - pleasant thoughts or ones that can get me down. It really depends on what my children are doing at the time - if they are enjoying a carefree day, living in the moment and loving life the thought of me being a child is wonderful! I recently heard someone say, "Oh to be a kid again..." and I know they were recalling the life free of worry, days filled with fun and no responsibility, the joy of being a child. One who is cared for, given direction and loved simply because they are!
Then there are the moments when my children are being kids - ones who fight, don't always obey and are not quick to listen. The thought of me being a child enters my mind and occasionally I may think, "No, I'm beyond that!" but usually it hits me that the statement is true, in God's eyes I am a child and always will be!! Then I wonder do I frustrate Him like my children can me? I'm afraid I know the answer to that question!!
But rather than focus on my thoughts and answers, let's take a look at God's!! Scripture shows us He defines me, and you, as a child. Not just any child, but His!!
"See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him." 1 John 3:1
Will you take a minute and think about this verse? What does it mean?? For me, the word love jumps out! In 6 weeks or less, I will meet the child I am carrying - one I love! On that special day and in the ones to come, my husband and I will lavish love on this little one because he or she is our child!! Thinking about God doing the same to me, is pretty powerful!!
And now as I meditate on this verse, the next two lines hit me as well - His Word clearly states this is who we are!! I am reminded once again that only God can define me!! The final sentence teaches me as well; sometimes the very fact that I'm God's child will cause confusion because those who don't know Him won't always understand or accept me, His child.
Defining ourselves as God's children does more than create confusion! No, this very fact affects eternity!! God doesn't just call us children, He asks us to believe like them and have faith like a child! What does that mean? We don't need to have all the answers, we aren't required to analyze everything...He asks us to believe!! "Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” Mark 10:15
God also knows there will be times when we behave like the children we are, so just like my children are learning, we must remember our actions have consequences. When my kids sin, they know discipline will soon follow and with God as my Father, I can expect the same!! "Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all." Hebrews 12:6-8
God disciplines me and you because He loves us! As we receive His love and find our identity in our role as His child, we are called and should be encouraged to share that love! "Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God." Eph. 5:1,2
As we grow and mature, we should become more obedient. This obedience should lead to a life that makes our Father proud and impacts those around us! "Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky..." Phil. 2:14-15
Finally simply knowing that we are God's children doesn't paint a real clear picture of the future, there will always be some unknown, but as His children we can rest and be at peace because of this truth - "Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is." 1 John 3:2
Friend, can I ask you a question? What difference does it make that you are a child of God?