“I don’t want to meet Jesus…”

As so often happens in the life of busy moms, God seems to speak directly to us in the most surprising and unlikely moments: “theological” conversations with our kids.

The other day my son and I had a chit-chat about heaven. He directly informed me that he didn’t want to go there. I thought perhaps it was because he didn’t want to leave our house, his toys, or his friends, so I tried to assuage his concerns.

No, he told me, those weren’t the reasons he didn’t want to go. When I finally got him to tell me why he didn’t want to go to heaven, his answer surprised me.

“Because I don’t want to meet Jesus…”

Huh? Did he really say that? Was I a loser mother, or what? My son didn’t want to meet Jesus! So I took a second to get ahold of myself and then asked him, “Sweetie, why don’t you want to meet Jesus?”

His answer floored me.

Timidly, quietly, and with a look of awe he said, “Because he’s so…powerful.

Regardless of the many times we’d assured him that God was his friend, that Jesus loved him, that God protected him from “monsters” at night, he’d keyed in on a quality of God that I so often conveniently overlook: God is amazingly, fear-invokingly powerful. Jesus is the God of earth-shaking thunder and sky-splitting lightning. His power is compellingly, boot-shakingly, gut-wrenchingly awe-some.

My son got the concept that I usually brush under the rug in my faith-life. After all, it just seems sort of unfriendly of God to be so powerful and for his Word to urge us to fear him. It doesn’t fit in the dainty little box I’ve constructed for my faith. But my son’s childish awe of Jesus gave me a glimpse of something I’ve been missing; I, too, should be a bit afraid to meet Jesus. He isn’t just my buddy.  

God can speak to us in many ways, but to me one of the most precious avenues is through my kids. How about you? When have your children said or done things that have taught you a thing or two about truth, about love, about priorities, about God? How is God teaching you about himself and his love through the tender innocence of your little ones? Keep your eyes peeled and your ears open…and prepare to be floored.

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