Children are born dreamers. You can watch them act out their dreams when they play and pretend. With a few plastic army men they wage earth-shaking battles; with a doll they practice being gentle, caring mothers. The sky is the limit in who they can be, or what they can do. Adults will sometimes ask a child to pinpoint their dreams for the future when they ask, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” The response runs something like this: When I get big, I want to be …a policeman…a nurse…a soldier…a mommy…a cowboy…an astronaut…a singer…a basketball player…president of the United States.”
Wouldn’t it be interesting to flashback to your childhood days and recount what you dreamed of being “when you get big.” You might still be dreaming of what you will be when you get big- when you get enough money, or get the rights breaks, or finish your education, or whenever you finally “arrive”. You might think of it this way: When I get big…I want to get married…I want to get my driver’s license…I want to live out on my own…I want a higher paying job… I want to have kids… I want to own a Mercedes…I want to make a million dollars…I want to own my own home… I want to be my own boss…I want to retire and enjoy life.” You fill in the blank. “When I get big, I want to…”
There is nothing wrong with dreaming, even after you become an adult. God gives you some dreams to spur you on to become what He wants us to be. But when you dream, Jesus tells us that if you really want to dream big, then you’ve got to think small. One of the highest priorities in Jesus’ teaching is that even as you mature, you still need to keep a childlike heart that is willing to learn from Him, serve one another, and be at peace with one another. You could say Jesus wants you to be able to say with all of your heart, “When I get big, I want to be little.”
I love this story!
One night a father was tucking his son into bed when the little boy asked his daddy about what it was like to be all grown up. The dad tried to explain what he could to his son, but the son interrupted by asking, “Daddy, when you get big, do you have to move out of the house from your mommy and daddy?”. The dad told him yes, when kids got old enough then they usually moved out of the home. The little guys eyes got misty, and finally he burst out sobbing, “Daddy, I don’t want to leave you and mommy! I don’t want to get big!” The dad took his sons into his arms and comforted him. “Buddy, you don’t have to leave home until you get ready. But one day you will get big enough to have your own little boy or girl to love, just like I love you. When you get big, you and I will still love one another, and I will always be there to help you any way I can. One day, when you get big, I might need you to take care of me. You don’t have to worry, buddy. No matter how big you get, deep down inside you will always be my little boy.”
God does not want you to be immature; He wants you to grow up. But even as you get bigger, He still wants you to keep that child-like heart that trusts Him. Jesus wants you to know that no matter how big you get, you will always be His child. What do you want to be when you get big? I hope you will say to the Lord, “When I get big, I want to be small.