If I was asked to name the greatest challenge of my Christian walk, I would say it was accepting God’s acceptance of me. I came into adulthood with a spiritual view of myself as a meandering ant under the shadow of a giant thumb - one mistake and the thumb came down.

If I was asked to name the greatest challenge of my Christian walk, I would say it was accepting God’s acceptance of me. I came into adulthood with a spiritual view of myself as a meandering ant under the shadow of a giant thumb - one mistake and the thumb came down.

My view of grace could be summed up in the words “yes but.” In my mind I knew the extent of God’s forgiveness, and could share with others that their sins were removed “as far as the east is from the west.” However, my own reflections on grace were met with “yes, but I will commit the same sin tomorrow,” or “yes, but let me clean up my act before I pray again.”

It was an experience with my own sons that began to open my heart to God’s love for me. Simply holding a tired 2-year-old in my lap, with the fine hair and warm scalp against my cheek, would fill my heart to overflowing with a father’s love for his child. The furthest thing from my mind was what trouble he might have gotten into that day, or what mischief might occur tomorrow. Spending time with my son in that moment left no other conditions on my love for him.

In Deuteronomy 1:31, Moses reminds Israel that “you saw how the Lord your God carried you, just as one carries a child, all the way that you traveled until you reached this place.” The vision of God carrying me as a child, simply desiring that moment with me, cut through all the justifications that usually raced through my mind.

The verse from Deuteronomy inspired a song, with lyrics and music completed in less than a day. The final stanza is as follows:

“I shall wait by the river Jordan
Cast my burden on the shore
Ride like a child upon your shoulders
I will drink and thirst no more.”

God had spoken to me of his grace through the contented silence of a child and his love for Israel. I had no reasoning or excuses to offer in his presence, just a contented and thankful heart. And the chorus of the song that was born:

“Papa carry me home
Carry me home tonight
I’m as faint as a whisper
You are stronger than I.”

Robert Mann is managing editor of eChristianNews.com and can be contacted at rmann@echristiannews.com.