Matthew 18:1-5 (TPT)
Who Is the Greatest in the Kingdom Realm?
1 At that time the disciples came to ask Jesus, “Who is considered to be the greatest in heaven’s kingdom realm?”
2 Jesus called a little one [toddler] to his side and said to them, 3 “Learn this well: Unless you dramatically change your way of thinking and become teachable, and learn about heaven’s kingdom realm with the wide-eyed wonder of a child, you will never be able to enter in. 4 Whoever continually humbles himself [see the importance of others beyond yourself] to become like this gentle child is the greatest one in heaven’s kingdom realm. 5 And if you tenderly care for this little one [others who need to feel important] on my behalf, you are tenderly caring for me.
Toddlers are so fun to be around as they are beginning to walk. They are wide-eyed explorers of life who enjoy family, touching things, and learning much of the time by trial and error; they are surrounded by developmental opportunities. Toddlers learn to understand and follow simple commands, as well as grow in how they imitate their parents. Little by little, toddlers learn to walk with confidence.
In our passage today, Jesus tells the disciples that unless we become like toddlers in our quest and view of our heavenly Father and the spiritual realm, we will never be able—have the power, skill or means—to enter the Kingdom of God. This truth Jesus speaks is really quite hard to hear for the disciples. They have had the most earthly experience with Jesus, yet, that really does not guarantee them spiritual greatness in the Kingdom. Instead, Jesus tells them it is learning to “walk” in his spiritual ways—to be teachable in the things of the Spirit—that actually opens the Kingdom of glory and greatness. Life with Jesus is all about a brand new way to live—a mindset that understands victory comes through obedience, experiential learning, and selflessly caring about our neighbors (everyone). Your life in Christ is meant to focus you on learning to walk by the Spirit. We help others recognize their worth and value to God, because we are blessed to be a blessing. We all begin as spiritual toddlers, but we are invited to grow up in Christ—to become sons and daughters of God who are led by the Spirit of Truth—as we imitate our Father. Keep your eyes focused on Christ, listen to his Word carefully, and walk toward greatness, today.
Prayer: Father, every day you teach me something so valuable about myself, about you, and about the world you died to save. Thank you for continuing to walk and talk with me about Truth. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
BTW, I have a praise to share with you, today! I have now progressed to walking with a cane—at about the steadiness and speed of a toddler! lol!