Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Ultimate "Scratch and Sniff" Experience

It is completely delightful to observe Camden’s exploratory mind these days. He is extremely inquisitive and he just wants to touch and feel everything, look in all the cupboards, explore any and everything. He is also at the stage where he is beginning to “walk” (with the help of my two hands, of course), and so this is all he wants to do. He will go from one room to the other, stopping to grab this or feel that. I am sure that anyone who has a child knows exactly what I mean.

And it’s this precise attitude and inquisitive mind that seems to be what we as Christians are called to emulate. “Unless you are converted and become as little children,” Jesus said, “you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3). There is such wonder and awe in the mind of a child. Everything is new, exciting, and interesting.

Many of us have, sadly, lost that sense of awe and wonder when it comes to our Christian faith. Perhaps we have been tithe-paying, church-attending members for many years but our religion is dry, boring, and stale. It has been a long time since we approached our faith with the curiosity, humility, and innocence of a little child.

It is to us that the apostle John points to the ultimate “scratch and sniff” experience. He begins his first epistle by writing, “We proclaim to you the One who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw Him with our own eyes and touched Him with our own hands. He is the Word of life” (1 John 1:1, NLT). Do you see it? Do you feel it? Do you know Whom he is speaking of?

He goes on to write, “This One who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen Him. And now we testify and proclaim to you that He is the one who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then He was revealed to us” (v. 2). The very One that John and the other apostles had seen, heard, touched and encountered is the very One whom John is now trying to reveal to us. And, indeed, all of scripture is pointing us to Him as well—so that we, too, can touch and feel and see and hear and experience Him for ourselves.

He is the remedy to our cold and lifeless religious experience. It is when we explore the depths of His character of love—when we touch Him with our hands and see Him with our eyes—that we will be filled with the awe and wonder that only a little child experiences. Indeed, Christ has promised that if He is lifted up before our eyes so that we can see Him, He will “draw all” of us unto Himself (John 12:32).

So let us explore with all the amazement and wonder and awe of a nine-month-old.

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