|From left to right: me, my brother and my sister.|
Go back with me to a time when joy meant to be on your father’s shoulders and comfort meant to be in your mother’s arms. Go back to a time when strength meant to grow up to become exactly like your dad and beauty meant to wear your mom’s clothes and make-up in secret. Go back in time when shelter meant to hide under your blanket on a rainy day and security meant to sleep in your parents’ bed at the strike of thunder. Go back to a time when prayer meant asking God to keep your toys safe under your bed for another day and the only care you had was how your favorite action figure was going to survive on its own in case you left home without it.
Go back to a time when seeing your parents kissing was something so gross you had to stop like the world depended on it and the idea of you getting conceived from a kiss like that was something so perfectly plausible. Go back to a time when you left fallen teeth under your pillow in exchange for money from the tooth fairy and Santa was so real that you never thought of making the connection why him and your dad can’t be at the same place at the same time. Go back to a time when girls had cooties and boys were smelly and seeing older students in recess mingling with the opposite sex made you think that they surely were given assignments in class to do so.
God gave us two supreme commands that are mutually equal in importance. The first is to love God with all our heart, soul and mind and the second is to love our neighbor as we love ourselves (Matthew 22:37-40). In these two commandments you will identify three recipients: God, yourself and others. If you are commanded with the same importance to love God, yourself and others, this only means one thing. It means that unless you do so, you will not be able to function properly on an individual level as well as on a communal level. God’s commandments are given for your own good and not because God is someone who likes to boss people around, and unless you realize and accept the fact that you are created in a way that will not allow you to function properly unless you follow the basic instructions, God’s commandments will always feel like orders instead of the owner’s manual.
The reason why I asked you to go back in time to the little innocent kid that you once were is because that little kid still lives in you to this day looking to fulfill the same core desires you had many years ago, only in all the wrong places.
John says that we love because God loved us first (1 John 4:19). What this means is that if you don’t realize how much God loves you personally you won’t be able to love and receive love properly. Everyone desires to be loved and to be able to love, but unless one finds the answer in God and God alone, one will not be able to operate according to original design.
“And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18:2-4 ESV)