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Guest Blogger: Dennis Arriaga

October 20, 2009

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CHILDLIKE vs. CHILDISH

I read this the other day:

“We are born charming, fresh and spontaneous and must be civilized before we are fit to participate in society.”

Judith Martin, “Miss Manners”

At first, I thought, “OK…that is the way it should be.”  We need to mature and grow up in order to move from childhood to adulthood.  It’s the progression of maturity.  [BTW, “mature” doesn’t equal boring!]

But…

The sad part, is that we often transfer this thinking to our walk with God and in the community of Christ Followers known as the “church.”  We have this idea that we must move from a walk marked with a sense wonder, newness, and awe to one of familiarity and stoicness in our relationship with a God who we think would have us “behave” in certain ways.

On one hand, Jesus calls us to be childlike:

“…for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these [children].  I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

Mark 9:13-16

On the other hand, the author of Hebrews challenges us not to be childish:

In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!  Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness.  But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.

Hebrews 5:12-14

Being “childlike” without being “childish” in our walk with God is the key.  We must keep and balance an amazed, excited, awestruck, and safe-in-the-arms-of-God attitude with one that seeks to grow and mature our worship through the “solid food” of God’s amazing Word and the encouragement of fellow Christ Followers.

God, I pray I would be childlike in my faith and walk with You.  Forgive me for the times I’ve settled for being a childish Christ Follower.

**Posted with permission from http://www.dennarr.wordpress.com.


GUEST BLOGGER PROFILE:

Dennis Arriaga

Worship Leader, East Valley Church (San Jose, CA)

www.dennarr.wordpress.com

www.eastvalleychurch.com

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