All God’s Children
I recall learning a spiritual in my junior choir that had the words
I’ve got a robe, you’ve got a robe
All of God’s children got a robe
When I get to Heaven goin’ to put on my robe
Goin’ to shout all over God’s Heaven
The notion of all God’s Children playing together has a good scriptural basis. There are two passages stands out for me. “And they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” And he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them.” Mark 10:13-16
The imagination of children is fascinating and regrettably often missing as life matures. What if we stopped and dug deep into our memory banks to recover the gift of imagination and said to ourselves. “I am like a child in the arms of Jesus; I want to trust him with my life; I want him to be close to me in joys and sorrows. I ask him for this, and ask it for all who are in my circle of life. Jesus wants closeness to each of us, as we want a close friendship with him. Let the child in me trust, ask, and simply enjoy being love by him.”
Then there is the part of John’s prologue that says, “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, John 1:12”
As a child needs the nurturing loving care of a godly parent due to their vulnerability so too does the child of God require, through faith in Jesus the Fatherly Care of God. No self-effort, cleverness, or merit is sufficient to make us right with God! It is only by believing in His name that He gives us the right to be called His children.
But with the privilege of becoming a child of God comes responsibility, and our part is to receive Him - through faith.
As I have done on a number of occasions in this series I turn to the words Frederick Beuchner when he says, “We are children, perhaps, at the very moment when we know that it is as children that God loves us - not because we have deserved his love and not in spite of our undeserving; not because we try and not because we recognise the futility of our trying; but simply because he has chosen to love us. We are children because he is our father; and all of our efforts, fruitful and fruitless, to do good, to speak truth, to understand, are the efforts of children who, for all their precocity, are children still in that before we loved him, he loved us, as children, through Jesus Christ our lord.” - (Frederick Buechner, The Magnificent Defeat published by Seabury Press, NY, in 1966)
Heavenly Father, thank You that I may call You Father, because I am Your child, through Jesus Christ my Lord. Shine more of His light into my heart, so that I come to know You more and to love You better each day. In Jesus’ name I pray, AMEN.