October 31, 2022
And He took them in His arms and began blessing them, laying His hands on them. (Mark 10:16)
People’s actions reveal their heart, who they really are. As you observe someone in everyday moments, you see their character and passions and decide what level of relationship you might have with them.
The great concentration of our lives should be to look at Christ. To gaze at Him often and early through His Word and in prayer. Ask Him to reveal Himself to You. If you look carefully, you will always find one more reason to run into His arms.
Some children were being brought to Jesus, obviously by their parents. They wanted the Miracle Worker to pray for their kids. (Wise parents will always want to get their children to Jesus, for there are things found in Him that are found nowhere else. Our great goal in parenting should be to bring them into every environment where Christ is, introducing them to the best Parent of all. To not bring them to Christ—as best we can—is our greatest failure.)
Christ’s disciples tried to send them away, thinking that the Messiah had more important things to do. But Jesus’ response was immediate and significant.
But Jesus said, “Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14)
He welcomed these kids without hesitation. He did not refuse them, nor their parents' humble desire. Jesus knew that these children were young adults. That they were as important as the oldest and wisest man or woman. He knew that to bless and impress their hearts early was as crucial as any encounter He would have.
He also used the moment to explain that everyone must come to Him like a child … humble, trusting, and dependent.
“Whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all” (Mark 10:15).
But then we see a simple action that speaks volumes.
Meditate on this scene. Jesus opened His arms, reaching for them. He brought them close. He took time, giving them His full attention. Can you imagine being so near to Jesus that you could hear his heart, feel His breath, smell the fragrance of His life? Few people enjoyed such intimacy with Christ on earth, but these blessed children knew it that day.
And then He began to pray a blessing over them with intentionality. Some translations say He was “fervently blessing them,” indicating the intensity of the act. The blessing of God is not a mere nicety. When God’s blessing comes, it takes something beyond normality. Jesus blessed five loaves and two fish, and it fed thousands. God’s blessings carry us, help us, provide for us, and protect us. All should long for the blessing of God. And Jesus granted that for these children. Only eternity will reveal all this precious blessing accomplished.
This real-life account reveals the heart of Christ, openly welcoming, embracing, and blessing those who come to Him in humble faith. Our life-giving Savior welcomes not only children but all who come to Him in this way. He is waiting for us to recognize the foolishness of living apart from Him. His arms are open. Anyone can come to Him and find Him the same precious Shepherd. And in the coming, you can discover the blessing of God.
Jesus, help me to see You as You are and come to You as You desire. You will not cast me out; if I draw near to You, You have promised to draw near to me! Forgive me for ignoring You. For being so proud that I don’t think I need Your nearness, for the nearness of God is my good. And thank You, precious Christ, for welcoming me as I come.
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