Childlike, Not Childish


Childishness is fine for children. But Jesus calls us to grow spiritually. And yet at the same time to become more childlike. Isn’t that a contradiction? No, because being childish is trusting in something limited and flawed, like ourselves. But being childlike is trusting in something greater than ourselves. Hence, being childlike is the natural result of coming to know the One who is infinitely greater than us — and yet in whose image we are made.


“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.”
~Corrie ten Boom

“Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark.”
~Rabindranath Tagore

“The reason birds can fly and we can’t, is simply because they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings.”
~J.M. Barrie

“All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Faith does not eliminate questions. But faith knows where to take them.”
~Elisabeth Elliot

“Faith is not the belief that God will do what you want. It is the belief that God will do what is right.”
~Max Lucado

“Define yourself radically as one beloved by God. This is the true self. Every other identity is illusion.”
~Brennan Mannin

“Gratitude takes nothing for granted, is never unresponsive, is constantly awakening to new wonder and to praise of the goodness of God. For the grateful person knows that God is good, not by hearsay but by experience. And that is what makes all the difference.”
~Thomas Merton

“I know now, Lord, why you utter no answer. You are yourself the answer.”
~C.S. Lewis


About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in For Pastors and Teachers, Quips and Quotes, Religion/Faith and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to Childlike, Not Childish

  1. Gail Perry says:

    What a wonderful reminder of who and whose we really are!🙏🙏🙏

    Liked by 3 people

  2. francisashis says:

    Thanks a lot for sharing the great motivational quotes.Take care.😊🌹🙏

    Liked by 3 people

  3. A very insightful distincation between the childish and the childlike.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. joyroses13 says:

    Great post and profound quotes! Elizabeth Elliott’s one really stood out to me. Yes! Having faith is not having all the answers and never having questions! Its what we do with the questions that makes the difference.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Chioma says:

    C.S Lewis quote was it for me: God himself is the answer. Thank you

    Liked by 5 people

  6. Yernasia Quorelios says:

    💜 “Children” ARE far more “Spiritual” than Bombastic ‘Grown Ups’ who claim to be “ChildLike” when “Childishly” trying to Convince Others; where is “Suffer the children to come unto me; for theirs is The Kingdom of Heaven.” when “Childish” ‘Grown Ups’ were ordering “ChildLike” “Children” to Leave Him Alone 🤔 ? ‘Growing Up’ is Miserable and MisGuided; ergo The Recovered KiDult is Responsible and Both “Childish” and “ChildLike” while The ‘Grown Up’ Remains LOST!!


    Liked by 3 people

  7. jamfayle says:

    Thanks, Mitch! I believe what you’ve written here and all the inspiring quotes.
    Best of all, I recognize that you do too!
    Go, man!!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. numrhood says:

    for with the lord nothing shall be impossible john 1:37

    Liked by 2 people

  9. writersiyandamzolo says:

    Oh my goodness! Thank you so much for compiling the post the way you did. This is awesome!

    Liked by 3 people

  10. gpavants says:


    Yes, that’a great distinction that many mix up. Like adaptation and evolution. We do well to come always as children of God.

    In Christ,


    Liked by 1 person

  11. TEP336 says:

    Another point to consider is one provided by my youngest children. While they run around and play, there are moments when they stop, come over to me or my wife, sit in our laps, take a few minutes for hugs and kisses, and then resume exploring the world. I’d like to think that this is part of what the Lord Jesus commanded of us, that we never forget to come to Him for the chance to rest and center ourselves before moving on to the next task in life. He ought to be our wellspring, our source of life and stability, and the place we go to seek comfort when life dings us in the forehead.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mitchteemley says:

      Aww. That makes me think of John 10:9-10, Jimmy, a verse I often pray aloud in first person: “Lord, you are the gate through which I entered and found salvation, and through which I come in go out and find good pasture…”


  12. revruss1220 says:

    Great reminder, Mitch. Thank you for this.
    For “grown ups” I think the saying that applies is: “Seeing is believing.” For those blessed with childlike faith, it is just the reverse: “Believing is seeing.”

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I’ve never heard the distinction between “childlike” and “childish” explained that way. Insightful.

    Liked by 1 person

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