Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Play Date With Jesus, Having a Child Like Faith

"For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light," Psalms 36:9.



© Diane D. Ramirez


I love this picture of my grandson, (who is ten now) he's taking such delight in the simple pleasures of life. Water pouring over him like a fountain. The joy of the water splashing on his face. The pleasure of being drenched. The pure joy expression and excitement, as he takes in this moment, is priceless.

There's several spiritual lessons, we can learn as adults from this picture.

1. Experiencing life from a child's viewpoint

2. Enjoying the moment, being in the now

3. Exhilarated pleasure from Abba's world

 Experiencing Life From a Child's Viewpoint

 

Children see life through the lens of purity and curiosity. Their world is to be explored, and are, with bright eyes. Children touch, and are fascinated with how things work. Why is a question they ask often. Why is the sky blue or why is the giraffe's neck so long?

Life, for them, is to be pondered. Within their soul is an innate inquisitiveness to learn, experience, and take hold of their surroundings.

I believe this is one of the very reasons, parents and grandparents adore their offspring, as they too can re-experience life through the point-of-view of the child. Everything is new again. And that is a wonderful feeling.

© Diane D. Ramirez


Jesus's disciples, when parents brought their children for him to bless, felt it was an intrusion . . . but Jesus did not.

He said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." Luke 18:16, 17 (NIV).

Jesus has an important message for us: Children possess the Kingdom of God. What a powerful and profound statement Jesus made about children—and we are to be like them in simple faith, accepting, receiving, experiencing God's world, both in the natural and supernatural.

The kingdom of God, as outlined in the Strong's concordance is basileia, and means:

1) royal power, kingship, dominion, rule.

The third definition is: of the royal power and dignity conferred on Christians in the Messiah's kingdom.

How do we hold on to that child like faith, yet be mature Christians?  The goal, I submit, is to rekindle wonderment into our moments, being present in our now. Realizing that within the child's spirit resides the Kingdom of God.

When we face our adult life—the struggles, conflicts, worry, fear, uncertainty, and pain, we need to close our eyes and find our inner child like faith, which perceives Jesus as our ever present, protecting, interceding, and loving Father. The Abba Father, who will embrace us as we run into his arms like a child.

Enjoying The Moment, Being in The Now 


Living life distracts us from the simplicity of our moments. As a parent, how many of us have said to our children, "Not now, I'm busy?" But now is all we have. What if God told us, not now. I'm busy? It would fill us with rejection and crush us. The moment, the now, is extremely important. Why? Because that is all we have and are certain of.

There is so much, which can steal our “play-time." We need to make a play-date with Jesus. By this I mean, experiencing the present of our now . . . good or bad, inviting Jesus into that space.


© Diane D. Ramirez

As within that time, we can learn, we don't rush and try to push aside what is happening, what we're feeling or not. We need to contemplate, what this "now" is telling us or expecting of us.

I'm learning that gratitude in the now, helps lessen sorrow, worry, and fills any emptiness when I allow my thoughts to linger in the past, which only robs me of the present and overwhelms me with sadness.

Retraining our thought patterns, to stop the rewind button of the past, is essential to staying and appreciating our now. To do this we can be aware of:

  1.     Sounds
    1.         Hearing laughter
    2.         Listening to every note of the music and the different instruments
    3.         Hearing the birds singing, the ocean waves, the cars passing by
  2.     Sight
    1.         People's faces, are they happy, sad
    2.         Your surroundings (ignore the unfolded clothes and dirty dishes)
    3.          Admire that rose before you walk into that building
  3.     Touch
    1.          The feel of food as you prepare it
    2.         The feel of your clothes as you put them on
    3.         The the breeze as it brushes against your face
  4.     Smell
    1.         The neighbor’s BBQ
    2.         The freshly laundered clothes
    3.         Your soap as you shower
  5.      Taste
    1.         Enjoy that double fudge ice cream cone
    2.         Savor the taste of the medium rare rib eye (or well done)
    3.         Fill the cool liquid pass over your taste buds 

All these senses can keep us in our moment when we are tempted to fly back into the past, or leap ahead of what ifs in the future. Gratefulness in the now, allows us to be present.

 

Exhilarated Pleasure From Abba's World


© Diane D. Ramirez
Here's another awesome picture, of one of my grand kids, who is eight now. She's swinging for the first time. She is exhilarated by the feel. The expression on her face, is one, I believe, God would love to see on us, as we become abundantly satisfied in him, with a child’s faith.

The NASB says, "They drink their fill of the abundance of Your house; And you give them to drink of the river of Your delights," Psalm. 36: 8.

Abundance in the KJV strong concordance means "fatness." This is the fatness, I wouldn't mind having! Wouldn't have to worry about losing those extra pounds.


Abundance also means: a. Plentiful; in great quantity; fully sufficient; as an abundant supply. In scripture, abounding; having in great quantity; overflowing with.

Also, KJV and the HNV use the word "make" instead of "give." I like how it reads in the KJV, "They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of your house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures."

Imagine what it would be like if we actually experienced God's river of delights or pleasures, daily. The word picture I get, is a dog when he's scratched on his tummy. His leg moves uncontrollably. He's delighted, satisfied, and exhilarated with pleasure, as his master loves on him.

Would you mind if God made you drink from his river of delights? Or another word we could use is "cause" you to drink. I know, I wouldn't. I think it would be absolutely exhilarating to understand, feel, know, accept, relish in God's abundance and drink of his pleasures. Think about it!

© Diane D. Ramirez


The verse before this is: "How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Your wings," Psalm. 36:7 (NASB).

What does a child do when they are afraid? They run to their parent for safety. It's when we take refuge under the shadow of his wings, where our Father’s lovingkindness greets us. Then we’re to drink our fill in the house of the LORD. And to experience his river of delights.

We too, should practice running under our Father's wings, hiding under his shadow, when life or the enemy tries to rob us of being exhilarated from the simple pleasures of life and growing in grace. It's so easy as adults to fret, become dissatisfied, and frustrated.

The dictionary defines a feeling of exhilaration as: elation, euphoria, exultation, exaltation, joy, happiness, delight, joyousness, jubilation, rapture, ecstasy, bliss.

My prayer is, we can learn to experience, enjoy, and be exhilarated—like a child, as we embrace the fatness of Abba’s house and drink from the pleasures of his river, in our daily moments. And when those moments are rough, we will run to our daddy, like a frighten child, for our refuge and peace.











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