WANT TO BE GREAT? DEPEND ON JESUS

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The world is obsessed with greatness. In all sections of society, pride of position weighs heavy on the desires of many and drives works through their passions. The Bible tells us that even the disciples were not spared of this worldly desire.

“Then a dispute arose among them as to which of them would be greatest. And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a little child and set him by Him, and said to them, “Whoever receives this little child in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me receives Him who sent Me. For he who is least among you all will be great.” Luke 46-48

What a simple yet deep teaching. We who are called beloved have already received Jesus. And because we have received Jesus, we have already received the Father who sent Him. But what does it mean to receive this little child in His name?

“Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:2-4

The penny drops.

Just as He told Nicodemus,

“Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3

So He tells us here that we are to have the attitude of a child when we approach God. Just like a child is totally dependent on his parents, so too does our heavenly Father want us to depend on Him.

Is it not frustrating when, as parents, we really want to do things for our children, things which we know will be good for them, but they just want to have it their own way, and in the end, they land themselves in unnecessary, completely avoidable trouble? In the same, Jesus is telling us that right now. Come to Me, don’t work it out on your own. Come and let me sort things out for you.

““Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30 [MSG]

You know, if we think about this carefully, who is the greatest when we look at a family of 5? The successful father? No. His children. For they toil not yet they receive. They need not worry yet they have all things planned out and provided for. They indeed are as blessed as the birds of the air and the lilies of the field.

“Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” Matthew 6:26

“So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” Matthew 6:28-29

Indeed, as children of the most high God, we certainly are of more value than they and we need to truly believe this.

“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:31-33

And you know what? When we have this attitude of dependence, Jesus does not consider us weak, or foolish, or irresponsible, as the world does. Instead, He calls this attitude humble. And He esteems this as greatness.

“Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:4

And finally, we need to remember that we who have received Jesus, have Him in us and because,

“You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” 1 John 4:4
So we have the greatest power ever in us because we have Jesus in us!

So do you want to be great? Depend on the Lord. Lean solely on His love, protection and provision. None of self, all of Him. That to Jesus is true greatness.

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