Complete Dependance

Read: Mark 10:13-16

Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it. (v. 15)

When my baby sees something she wants that’s out of reach—a rice husk, her bottle, anything shiny—she crawls over, points with both index fingers and begins a refrain of “dah dah dah” until we hand it over (or distract her!). Unable to grab the thing herself, she’s 100 percent dependent on us to offer it. And when we do, her laughter is so precious that we can’t help but laugh along.

Infants help us see what complete dependance looks like. They can’t have whatever they want, whenever they want it, but rely on their parents for everything. It’s no coincidence that they never say “me,” but always say “Mama” or “Dada.”

When Jesus tells us that we must receive the kingdom of God like a child, he isn’t asking us to come crawling and pointing and babbling (at least, not literally). But he is asking us to be dependent on his grace rather than our own efforts.

Entrance to the kingdom is offered to us by Christ. It isn’t something that we can take or make or earn ourselves. No amount of hard work, education, volunteer hours, or acts of Christian service can get us into God’s kingdom. Only by faithfully and humbly following Christ, and calling on him as we once called on our own parents as infants, can we receive this gift. And when he gives it, our joy and laughter is contagious. —Elise Johnson

As you pray, ask for courage to depend on your Father in all things.

About the Author

Elise Johnson is a creative writer and professional communications consultant living in Toronto, Canada with her husband Andrew, an Anglican priest, and her daughter Beatrice. Her writing explores life as a new mom, being a minister’s wife, and more.