It should come as no surprise to me that God is continuing to teach me through the tiny tots I so enjoy being with. But one lesson was far more subtle than usual, and it has taken me a few days reflection on an adorable moment to recognize how childlike we should be when approaching God’s throne.
It was a Thursday. The church was having a party in the park. As usual, I was running around with a few of the kids. One in particular had attached himself to me for the evening. I was carrying him on my hip, running around, doing all kinds of ridiculous things you do when playing with toddlers.
Wanting and not wanting a cupcake
And at one point, we were sitting and resting when he decided he wanted to be up on my shoulders. So, he climbed up, and once I had hold of his little hands, I stood up and we started to walk around and explore again. At one point, we came over to the dessert table, and he asked someone to hand him a cupcake. They obliged, and he began to eat his strawberry cupcake with bright green frosting over my head. I wasn’t overly concerned about it, but others were. So in watching out for me, the same person who gave him the cupcake reached up to take him off of my shoulders so he could finish it.
As he was being lifted off of me, he protested being taken down. They explained it was just until he finished his cupcake and he would be put right back. Then it happened. Half-eaten cupcake in one hand, the other reaching for me, he declared: “Then I don’t want the cupcake anymore.”
Why am I not like that with God?
In the moment, it was an innocent and adorable statement causing chuckles and teasing about his attachment to me. And then it was over. But for some reason, it kept playing in my head. And it struck me, “Why am I not like that with God?”
We all have cupcakes in our lives. We’re resting on God’s shoulders. Then we see something that appears desirable, and we convince ourselves that we can have both—the cupcake and the resting. And for a little while, it seems to work. But slowly, the cupcake becomes greater to us than being with the Father. So, we remove ourselves from his shoulders. Sometimes we realize it as we’re climbing down. Sometimes we have to fall flat on our backs before becoming aware of it. But what do we do once we recognize that we must choose either time with God or the cupcake?
Faith Montgomery, a student at the University of Texas at Austin, is serving with Go Now Missions in Worcester, Mass.