One of the things I love most about being a parent is the random conversation. You know – the one that happens at that strangest time?
The other night, I was helping my youngest out of his bath when we had this one. I wrote it down for posterity’s sake.
“Mommy, do you know everyone in the world?”
“No!” I chuckle. “No. Not even close.”
“But everyone knows Jesus.”
‘Wow – what a segue,’ I think.
“No, Honey. Everyone doesn’t.”
I think for a beat or two.
“But we do. Hmm – what do you know about Him?”
“Yes. What else?”
“I don’t know.”
“How do you think he feels when he looks at you?”
Partially wrapped only in his towel, he looks up at me with a wet face and tousled hair, and breaks into a full-face grin.
I can’t help but smile broadly too. My little man feels unconditionally loved. And he is. He truly, truly is.
Then, a couple verses of Scripture spring to mind:
Jesus…called the children to himself and said, “Let the children come to me and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these….” – Luke 18:17
Oh – if we could just approach Him with this same expectation that we would be received unconditionally….
“With age-old love I have loved you” – Jeremiah 31:3
I know, I know. Why do I still allow doubt to creep in?
What was that other verse – the one from Song of Songs? I get my Bible and look it up. The book will make you blush, but it’s a love story between God and His beloved – His people – and He’s speaking to every single one of us, beckoning us to union with Him.
“How beautiful you are, how pleasing, my love, my delight!” – Song of Songs 7:7
It feels wonderful to read this, to have knowledge of where to turn to find it. And the more I see the big picture, the more I understand that the Old and New Testaments together are one big love story to the world – and to me. But as I read, I’m also aware of all the pages in my Bible with which I’m not familiar. And I sense that I’m being called – again.
Today, I’m studying in Hebrews when this pops out:
“Everyone who lives on milk lacks experience of the word of righteousness, for he is a child. But solid food is for the mature, for those whose faculties are trained by practice to discern good and evil.” – Hebrews 6:13-14
My son’s understanding of Jesus is absolutely correct, but he has more to learn. He needs to mature. And although I have been a Christian for many years, this verse is an exhortation to my spiritual renewal, too. I can’t rest on what I know and expect to deepen my relationship with Christ. Like any relationship, this one requires attention, care, and a desire to learn more about the other person. Friendships and marriages become stale and fall apart when the individuals involved fail to keep pursuing one another. And since my God, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8), I can count on Him not giving up on his end. That leaves the rest to me.
It’s Lent. A perfect time to consider ways to recommit myself to Christ. If my heart, mind, and soul look the same now as they did last Lent, or the ones before, I have work to do. The Bible is a large tome. Time to dig in.