On our own, we are unable to choose salvation. God's Spirit must first convict us of our spiritual need. Specifically, He nudges—that is, He almost places a discomfort within our hearts—and reveals sin. This imperfection in our lives creates the need for a Savior to redeem us.
Do you ever wonder, then, how young children can be saved? Can they truly grasp the depth of their sin and their need for redemption? In most cases, probably not. Yet both my son and daughter genuinely received Jesus at the tender age of five.
Thankfully, almighty God is a gentle Father who meets us right where we are. Preschoolers can understand the basics of right and wrong—and the difference between obedience and defiance. The Lord can place within a young heart the desire to obey and follow Christ. Then, as that little one learns at home or church, God gives him a yearning and sense of need for Jesus. It is a simple longing without the deep, more complex understanding of an adult.
In many ways, however, the unencumbered faith that children have is what He desires of us, but with more understanding and gratitude, of course. What a gift! If we were expected to understand spiritual matters in great depth prior to salvation, none of us would qualify for the gift.
The lifelong process of spiritual maturation begins the moment a person is saved. Prayer and Scripture are essential, as is the role of other Christians. Each of us should be teaching those less mature—especially children—about Jesus. God uses believers to reveal young ones' need for the Savior.
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Used with permission from In Touch Ministries, Inc. © 2009 All Rights Reserved.