FRIDAY, APR. 27: The mindset of The Kingdom of Heaven is so contrary to our own natural mindset. Has it changed over the years?
Has mankind always had a certain struggle to simply believe in Jesus and The Kingdom of Heaven?
Has it always been somewhat of a struggle to operate along the mindset of The Kingdom? Yes, yes, and yes!
In His three-year ministry, Jesus was constantly trying to teach those around Him to take on another mindset and think in a different way.
For example, to be the greatest you have to be the least.
To receive you must give. To be forgiven you must first forgive.
All of those mandates were strange and unusual to the people of Jesus’ day, and they are just as strange to the people of today.
Matthew 18:1: At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?
2 And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,
3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
In the scripture, Jesus was attempting to teach those who followed after Him the way of The Kingdom of Heaven.
You see, His disciples were not focused right and Jesus wanted them to refocus.
Jesus wanted the disciples to understand that while they wanted a kingdom here on earth, He was preparing them for The Kingdom of Heaven.
The disciples and other Jews were tired of Roman domination and desired a Messiah, a saviour, a king to rescue them from the evil clutches of the Roman Empire. The disciples are no different from those of us today who desire to be rescued from the rule of a certain people.
Jesus wanted them to understand that God could keep them, even under the authority of the Roman Empire. They could still live a life victorious.
This is so important for the Christian today.
You may not be ‘rescued from it’, but Jesus will keep you in it and Jesus will take you through it.
Remember the Greater One lives within you, and with the power of Jesus Christ within you, you cannot and will not suffer defeat.
There is a kingdom that is far beyond the kingdoms of today.
You must not become solely focused on surviving life. You must live life abundantly.
Jesus wanted the disciples to understand that while they sought position and power, the real Kingdom was about seeking Jesus.
Oh, the simplicity of seeking the love and care of Jesus.
Just as a child simply believes that his mommy and daddy will take care of him, Jesus wants the child of God to live in the same manner.
The trap of this world is to ‘bug down’ Christians with the cares and woes of the world.
The focus of this world is to out-do the other person so that you get the promotion and the wage increase.
Jesus showed the disciples that while they jockeyed for position, they were totally out of position.
It was the innocence and purity of the little child that won the heart of Jesus.
Jesus sat a child right in the midst of them. They wanted the focus on them, but Jesus placed all focus on the child.
Why? The little child is fully dependent upon the care of his parent.
The little child is not planning a career move, a corporate takeover, or how to outdo the next person. The little child is simply enjoying life.
Christians, if you are labouring, stop. If you are fighting and fussing, stop. If you cannot find love, joy, and peace in what you are doing, stop.
Seek the presence of Jesus and you will find the presence of the One who loves you the most.
Become childlike. Don’t be childish in seeking to ‘beat up’ others.
Walk in childlike love and forgiveness and you will find life more fun and more carefree.
Let the child in you live and enjoy being cared for by Jesus.
Dr Maria A Seaman is the pastor of Shekinah Worship Centre, North Shore, Hamilton Parish.