"Do I have to?"
'It wasn't me?"
Any of the above sound familiar?
According to The Telegraph these were a part of the top 20 most annoying phrases used by children in 2010 with a study of over 3000 families.
It's almost been a year since my first article titled "Are we there yet?" (for anyone wondering, it is number 3 on the list of the most annoying phrases used by children) and I find myself reminiscing about how far I have come both in the natural and spiritually. Despite the growth over the past year, I will be the first to put my hand up and say I have definitely said each of those phrases above at least once in the past couple weeks, but each time stopped with an internal dialogue of "attitude".
In 1 Corinthians 13 verse 11 (NIV), Paul puts it like this,
"When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me," highlighting the need for us to grow and develop our attitudes as we get older.
However, in Luke 18 verse 17 (ESV), Jesus puts it like this "Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it," highlighting the need for us to retrain the initial faith we had when we first understand the love of Christ.
At first these two verses seemed somewhat contradictory. I soon realised they were actually complementary, meaning that when combined in such a way they enhance and emphasise the qualities of each other. How you may ask?
1. Childhood behind me – My attitude this week has been influenced by where God has taken me in the past and got me through situations I could not do without his Holy Spirit and comfort. Understanding this helps me realise that stress and worry will not help me. However, what will help me is changing my heart's attitude from a spoilt princess wanting immediate gratification, to understanding what gratefulness looks like in the midst of trials, to the power of praise when faced with delayed gratification.
2. Childlike faith in front of me – My attitude this week was heavily influenced by where God wanted to take me, not where I was in the present. Childlike faith trusts the big God in the heavens with no reservations and expects the best from the future. Just like a child trusts their parents and depends on them for provision, safety and love. This is how I choose to live.
I know that acting like a child moving into my next quarter of a century will no longer benefit me; unless I hold onto a childlike faith and stay soft towards people, rather than being jaded by holding grudges with those who have disappointed me in the past. After all, it's all part of growing up.
Meenal Chandra is a Sydney based writer who will be celebrating a quarter of a century whilst learning the power of attitude.
Meenal Chandra's previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/meenal-chandra.html