But Jesus called for them and said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the Kingdom of God belongs. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the Kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.” Luke 18:16-17 (NRSV)
Children are bold and trusting by nature, until they spend some time out in the real world where hurts and betrayals happen. Parents and caregivers constantly give cautions to trusting young children because young children haven’t learned the difference between when it’s OK to trust, and when it’s dangerous to trust.
As part of the process of living and growing up most children end up with a healthy dose of cynicism and reticence toward the world before reaching adulthood. We become too distrustful and jaded for our own good. In many ways that distrust and cynicism is warranted, as the world isn’t always a very safe place and life can be hard at times. Friends and family fall short of their promises. Disappointments and hurts happen. There are many instances in which it is downright dangerous to trust others.
As we come of age we lose that childlike innocence and we pick up all kinds of inhibitions and doubts- even if they come from legitimate efforts to stay safe- that make it harder for us to simply trust.
Jesus says that we need to come to Him with that childlike innocence and hard-wired trust that only children have. He welcomes us to Him in perfect love and safety.
That’s not easy to do. Especially for adults with jaded and cynical minds and the emotional and spiritual scars that come along with living life.
This is why the Holy Spirit intervenes on our behalf to help us surrender the things that would keep us away from God and bring us to Jesus- the Way, the Truth and the Life. He wants us to surrender our burdens, our fears, our pain, our sins- everything.
(Jesus said): “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28 (NRSV)
We can trust Jesus with everything we are- without reservations, without fear, and without limits. And we have the Holy Spirit always available to help us do that.