Jesus exhorts us to become like little children because heaven belongs to them. He said in Matthew 18:3, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. What exactly is the Kingdom of Heaven all about then that God gives it to children? Romans 14:17 gives us the answer. It says, “For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” The idea of peace and joy struck me as I was thinking about the Christmas season this year. That’s what the angels declared when they announced the coming of Jesus. Peace and Joy are two characteristics that are probably most appropriate for children. Grown-ups worry too much about what we’re going to eat and drink and how to put a roof over our heads and how to make a living. Jesus frequently addressed the stress of adulthood. He wanted us more like children who rest confidently and comfortably under His care. “Don’t worry about tomorrow,” He says, “tomorrow will take care of itself.” But like the Israelites whose sins brought devastation to their lives we lament with the writer of Lamentations, “The joy of our hearts has ended…” (Lamentations 5:17).

There are many things that rob us of our childlike faith, joy and peace in life. One of those things is an unbalanced schedule. The wisest man in the world exhorts us to get a grip on our perspective on the variety of activities under the sun. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 exhorts us to remember that there is time for every purpose under heaven; plant & harvest, kill and heal, cry and laugh, grieve and dance, embrace and refrain, keep and throw away, tear and mend, love and hate, be quiet and to speak, war and peace. In the modern adult mindset we must balance our lives with respect to our activities. Out of balance is usually the result of sinful intentions, motives, or desires. That’s why Peter tells us (1 Peter 5:8 – Amplified Version) “Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring [in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour.”

In setting your schedule for 2012, please plan to spend time with God.  When we put God first, all other things fit better. Commit to regular church attendance and time with God in His Word. It will effect everything else you do in your life. The Israelites recognized that Moses spent time with God. Exodus 34:29 (HCSV) As Moses descended from Mount Sinai—with the two tablets of the testimony in his hands as he descended the mountain—he did not realize that the skin of his face shone as a result of his speaking with the LORD. Those who spend time with Jesus will find confidence and security in their day to day life today also. Acts 4:13 (ESV) Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.

“I will spend time thinking about everything you have done. I will consider all of your mighty acts.” Psalm 77:12