I looked at her and said, “It’s not the child’s job to tell the mom what to do, it’s the mom’s job to tell the child what to do.” She looked at me like I was from another planet. I am happy to report that the story ends well. She learned some discipline and respect for authority, and we developed a good relationship.
But this little girl was right in tune with the times. How often have you heard someone say, “I just can’t believe in a God who would…?” Seems they forget who is the Creator and who is the created. People have been making a god to suit themselves for nearly as long as there have been people.
That is one reason Jesus was rejected. He didn’t suit their idea of a Messiah. They wanted worldly might, worldly wealth, and worldly status. He was a poor man with no army, who constantly talked about humility. They came to Jesus and said, “Show us a sign and we will believe.” What had he been doing but showing sign after sign?
One of my favorite people in the Bible is the blind man of John 9 whom Jesus healed. He is also one of the bravest in the Bible. The rulers questioned him again and again. “How are you able to see? Where did this man come from?” They even brought in his parents and accused them of pretending their son was born blind. These men were so desperate to find a way to discredit Jesus that they were coming up with absurdities. Finally the man looked at them and said, “Here is the amazing thing—you don’t know where he came from, yet he opened my eyes!” And this man, whose life was really just beginning, was thrown out of the synagogue, ending any sort of normalcy he might have ever had. I think I know who one of the 3000 on Pentecost was.
Are we any better than those hardheaded rulers of Jesus’ day? Do we try to make the church into something other than God intended? What we usually want is a social club with rules of our own making, including what to wear, what to say, and how loudly we can say it. What God wants is a dynamic group of believers, whose minds are on the spiritual world not the physical; who understand the severity of God’s judgment and believe it is not only their mission to make sure they are saved, but to try to take others with them; people who understand that their worship must include a life of service to others, and who put the unity and good of the body before their own likes and dislikes.
Being a child of God means we don’t tell God how to do things; He tells us.
Woe to him who strives with his Maker! A potsherd among potsherds of the earth! Shall the clay say to Him who fashions it, “What are you making?” Does your work say, “He has no hands?” Woe to him who says to his father, “What have you begotten?” or to his mother, “What have you brought to birth?” Isa 45:9,10
But now, O Jehovah, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you the potter, and we are all the work of your hand. Isa 64:8