Last week I wrote about doing things that bring us joy and how important it is to create time and space in our lives for those things. If you missed it, you can read here.
Do you remember the feeling of swinging on the playground, pumping your legs as hard as you could, and jumping off the swing at the highest tippy-top point? Or spending hours on the beach or in a sand box creating the Taj Mahal of sand castles? Do you remember the rush of excitement that washed over you when you heard the ice cream truck close by? Or the smell of the field where you caught fireflies on summer nights as a child?
Six months ago I went on a women’s retreat and at one point that weekend I was told to ask God to show me how He sees me when I’m walking in freedom. I closed my eyes and instantly had a vision of 4-year-old me, with my hair an un-brushed mess, dancing and twirling, wearing a fluffy pink tutu and my fairy wand in hand. I can’t even begin to tell you how overwhelmed that vision made me feel.
Then it hit me - when I am secure in that freedom, and know where it ultimately comes from, I am living with a childlike spirit.
Since October, God and I have been walking through a season where He’s asked me to pursue a childlike spirit, understand what it means to know God more intimately as my father, and in turn know myself more intimately as God’s daughter. The most amazing thing I’ve learned is that I never have to grow up!! Of course pursuing maturity is so necessary and so good, but the beautiful thing I have experienced firsthand is that as God prunes me and reveals things to me I need to let go of in order to mature and grow closer to him, he also restores my identity as his child and shows me how to rest in that piece of who he created me to be, in a way deeper than ever before. God designed us to live in the coexistence of maturity and childlike wonder.
How would you describe a child? How do they act? What is important to them? They unapologetically ask lots of questions (What’s your name? Why do you do that? What is that? Why?) They enjoy the littlest things in life. They’re carefree. They’re trusting. They speak freely. They’re playful and curious. The list goes on.
As I was thinking through my list of things that bring me joy last week, I realized that for most of the things on my list, I pictured myself as a kid, or asked myself what makes me feel most like a kid – which is so significant. In order for us to have a clear understanding of what brings us joy, we have to ask God to restore our sense of childlikeness. We have to invite him in to restore any tarnished or wounded part of our childhood. Because in order for us to be effective for Him, we have to live out of the truth that we are children of the Most High King. It is vitally important for us to understand how to rest secure in who God says we are.
Now, without looking back at your list from last week, I want you, right where you are, to ask God to show you what you look like in your freest state. Ask him to reveal a memory or picture or anything that represents your freedom as a child.
Now, go back and compare your lists and comment below on how God is showing up in your life and restoring your identity as His child!