While out for a stroll recently, I found myself inexplicably walking on the curb instead of the sidewalk. It struck me that this was something a child would do: taking the fun/challenging way vs. the boring/easy way.
It made me think of Jesus’ words,
“Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:3
While Jesus wasn’t referring to walking on curbs (he goes on to explain that he’s talking about placing ourselves in a lowly/humble position before him), I do think there’s an aspect of kingdom living that includes a childlike playfulness, openness, sense of exploration, creativity, and adventure.
I believe God created Adam and Eve like this: innocent, free, happy, wide eyed, unencumbered by the need for position. This was his original ideal and intent for humanity; who we were made to be.
There’s a big difference between childlike and childish. Childlike doesn’t necessarily mean immature. It can be a positive thing, especially when paired with wisdom.
Childish, on the other hand, is not a good thing. Many adults are childish through their insistence on getting their own way, being first, throwing tantrums, refusing to share, etc.
So here’s the thing: I want to try to do at least one childlike thing per day. I think it will help me stay young at heart and avoid the dreaded seriousness that can creep in with age.
Whether it’s joining my son in his excitement over discovering a bug, or helping someone out without getting a big head about it, the kingdom belongs to the kids and I want to laugh, play, receive, and learn well.