Rob here. My 2 year old daughter, Jasmine (Jaz), has two speeds: full speed ahead or asleep! There’s no apathy, cynicism or confusion. If something’s wrong she tells you (by crying, yelling or occasionally telling you nicely), if she’s happy she laughs, sings, dances etc and if she needs comfort she’ll come to you for a cuddle. If I need reminding about the joy of life I simply watch her for 5 minutes and my heart will come alive again. I adore the simplicity of Jaz but also the way she goes after what she wants. Of course you can’t always get what you want (no marshmellows just before dinner!) but she always bounces back from disappointment with a new sense of purpose once she’s had time to grieve (i.e throw a bit of a wobbly!).
Us adults on the other hand seem to squash life whenever we get the chance. When we’re happy and joyful we remind ourselves that good things don’t last, thus killing the joy right there and then. When we’re sad we tell ourselves that we’re being silly and need to stop crying and get ourselves together. We pretend that we don’t need anybody and then complain when nobody calls. We only dance when no one is looking and sing in the privacy of our cars (at least that’s a start). No wonder Jesus said, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children. I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it (Luke 18:16-17 NLT).”
Jesus came to give us life with a capital L. He came to set us free. He came to put a new song in our hearts and help us dance on mountaintops. It’s time for us all to open our hearts up to God and feel the joy of life that he wants to give us. The early church father Iraneus said, “The glory of God is man fully alive.” Brilliant. How do you worship God? Go and be alive in him. “So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus (Romans 6:11 NLT).”
I have to go. I have a dance appointment in our lounge with a 2 year old girl who’s helping me become fully alive!