Continuing on from yesterday, I think that our view of God as our heavenly Father is one of the most important stepping stones to our spiritual growth. If we can call God our "Father", not only does it imply a closeness to Him on our part, but it also implies a childlike dependence on Him and thus less reliance on our own gifts and abilities to make it through life. Hence, dependence is key! Before thinking about this in depth during the past month, I had never before tied its importance into a relationship image such as one of a Father to His child.
CHILDLIKE DEPENDENCE LEADS TO HUMILITY
Thinking back to when I was a child, I was well aware that I could not live on my own. I remember worrying one time as a young girl that if something happened to my mom, I would not know how to fix my hair! When I was in college, I knew very well that if I did not do as my parents asked (good grades, behavior, etc.) that I would not be able to afford the lifestyle (living away from home) to which I'd become accustomed. It is a very humbling experience to be dependent on someone else, isn't it? Don't miss this --- God wants us to be totally dependent upon Him so that He can use us to accomplish mighty things for His glory!
Matthew 18:4 Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
James 4:10 Humble yourself in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
When we can come to Him with total trust for everything in our lives, knowing that His ways and thoughts are higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9) and that He has our best interests in mind (Ro 8:26-28), then we can know we are on the way to seeing God as our heavenly Father.
CHILDLIKE DEPENDENCE LEADS TO MORE POWERFUL & FERVENT PRAYER
The closer we get to God, the more we will pray. The more we pray, the closer we get to God. Am I talking in circles? Maybe, but isn't that how it really works? To approach God with the innocence of a child approaching a caring parent results in more sincere and specific prayer for our wants and desires. Remember that God wants to grant our requests!
Luke 11:11 If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? 12 Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?
As we see God answering "yes" to our small prayers, we eventually start trusting Him with bigger requests and relying on Him for guidance and help. We start becoming more dependent. Our relationship with God becomes deeper as we converse more with Him through prayer and listen to Him through our scripture reading. Just a a relationship with a friend grows with intimate conversation, so does our relationship with God.
Childlike dependence. We've all experienced it in some way or another. If not with our physical father, maybe with another parent, grandparent, guardian or even an older sibling in some cases. We rely on mentors and friends for guidance and support.
My question is this: How dependent are you on God? Are you an "adult" or a "child"? Just remember, just because we've grown up, doesn't mean we need to grow out of our need for dependence. We just need to be careful that our dependence is on God, and God alone. After all, He is the only true dependable one.