Matthew 11:25, 28-30 "At that time Jesus said, "I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; . . . "Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
Do you understand child like faith? In one sense it is the wrong question, because the chief thing in a childís faith is that the are willing to believe without understanding how or why. Peter Pan is child like faith, if you believe you can fly, you can fly ... and grownupís never stayed in never never land, because they could not believe.
Have you ever thought as you prayed the Lordís Prayer, now where will my daily bread come from? Thatís a grownup worry. Grownups try to store up for a rainy day, and when Israel was in the wilderness, and the manna fell each day from heaven, some of the people tried to gather not just their daily bread, but also to save up some from tomorrow - guess what? The next day it was rotten and wormy and invested with maggots. And while the same manna does not fall from heaven today, those who try to save up often find what they save has turned rotten, and it seeks to corrupt them too. Saving up is a grown up thing, but God has called us to live by faith, to trust that God will provide what is needed when it is needed.
Faith is the key. Faith knows the word of God, accepts the Word of God as true and trusts the Word of God. You might say faith has 3 legs, and thatís why it stands - know, accept, trust - if any of the legs is missing, that unstable faith will soon fall. And the way it most often happens is that grownups will know and accept as true all of Godís Word, but their trust is placed elsewhere. To go back to the example of the daily bread, I know God gives me daily bread, I accept it as true - but I trust that the food I will eat is in the cupboard, the freezer, the refrigerator, and in the oven. So I live by sight, and not by faith - faith is living with an empty cupboard, freeze, fridge and oven, still confident that this day God will give daily bread, though not knowing how God will provide, something children can do easily.
So we grow up, and we take on burdens, and we become heavy laden with many cares. In our prayers we ask God to take these burdens away, to give us peace, and rest, and joy in our lives. Its a reasonable request. But as grownups we find it hard to cope with Godís answer. Here we are weary and heavy laden, and Godís answer to our prayer for relief is - take my yoke? That sounds like another burden, we canít carry any more. And often thatís where we stop. When we take care of the load that we are under, when we have nothing else to carry, then we will return to God, and the yoke to which he calls us. But as we never finish with the load we are under, we never return to God and his yoke, and so it is that many perish - for by ourselves the load of guilt and shame is more than we can bear, and by our works we cannot make peace with God or earn life everlasting.
But the funny thing is that children donít have this trouble, they donít even think how can I do this, for if someone tells them to do it, it must be possible, so when God calls them to pick up the yoke, or to take up the cross, they donít ask how, but if faith they reach out, or so it appears....
But if we could see from the heights of heaven, we would see that it was God reaching out, and when we reached out to pick up the yoke that Jesus has called us to, that that was the first time we laid down our burden, and as it was laid down, God picked it up and took it away. Thatís what forgiveness is, and thatís what the love of God in Jesus Christ is all about. Its also the reason why grownups become weary and heavy laden, because they will not let go of their burdens, they have to carry them themselves. But children know that they are powerless. Children know that they cannot save themselves. Children know how to live by grace through faith, and so there is much we can learn from children, as at the same time we teach them to know Jesus and to accept Godís word as true, children are teaching us what it is to live by faith, and all this is according to the gracious plan of God. You see God has gathered us together, and given us many gifts, that they might be a blessing to us and that we might be a blessing to others, all for Jesus sake.