Remember the Mother Goose rhyme “Pattycake, Pattycake, Baker’s Man?” It is an old English nursery rhyme first found in the play The Campaigners from the 1600s. It then appears in Mother Goose’s Melody in 1765. There are a few versions, but one thing is overtly apparent, it later became a means of keeping children busy. It is catchy, so young minds quickly remember it, and the constant clapping ingrains it into memory without much effort.
I remember playing Pattycake with my sister for hours–just to get it right–and see how fast we could do it! At that age, you have no cares at all. The only goal for the day, at least for me, was to get up and play with my favorite toy, play in the woods, or find a quite place to read. There was no consideration of how my day would affect others or any thought of who was taking care of my needs…that was what our parents were there for, right? Parents are there to provide us the items that we need like food, shelter, and “things.” They are there to correct us when our wants outweigh our needs, and so on until we are mature enough to make those decisions on our own.
As children, we can become easily distracted. Catchy tunes and repetitive actions can hold our attention and get us into habits. I would guess quite a few of you can remember these classics, “Humpty Dumpty,” “Little Miss Muffet,” “Itsy Bitsy Spider,” shall I go on? And how old are you now? Yep, those words got down in your heart, and you know them still today!
So, how does all this tie into Christianity?
Followers of Christ can fall into the trap of the enemy by “keeping themselves busy” with no real end game. We do things out of ‘memory’ and ‘habit’ and have not graduated into a mature relationship with God. We search out the convenient things to do for God like attend church, pay a tithe when we want to, read our Bible occasionally, or feel proud when we can follow a devotional for a whole year. But, do any of those things bring us closer to God if our “heart” is not in it? Are we just playing “Pattycake” and going through the motions? Are we just relying on God to do everything–healing, supply our needs, and perform miracles, without knowing what He wants us to do? We have a responsibility in the Kingdom of God as ambassadors of it.
So we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making His appeal through us; we [as Christ’s representatives] plead with you on behalf of Christ to be reconciled to God. 2 Corinthians 5:20 (AMP)
There is a balance between what God is responsible for and what we are to do. I am not speaking of works trying to “do good to get good.” I am talking about making choices in our lives that line up with the principles of God and having faith in what Jesus did when the road gets rough.
We are told to ‘have no fear’ and ‘endure to the end’ so I am pretty sure that means we are going to be busy in this life if we are following Jesus. Did you know that the word retirement does not exist in the Hebrew language? Could that mean we should not be complacent as Christians? Getting comfortable in your daily routine without having your heart engaged will allow you to know of God but not be in fellowship with Him. The Holy Spirit came so we would have a constant 24/7 direct line to what God’s plan is for our lives and an intercessor for our life.
Believing Christ died for our sins is paramount, but not believing in the Holy Spirit will keep you away from an intimate knowledge that was made just for you. God loved us so much He sent His Son to die for us to wash clean the sins of Adam and for the very purpose of sending a divine Counselor. However, it seems a spirit of Adam–after the fall–has risen to a level not seen on the earth for thousands of years. Many today have the same tendencies and weaknesses he did after he ate from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. He blamed others (Eve) and avoided his responsibility for his actions. He made excuses; “Well, it was that woman you gave me.” He chose to hide instead of looking at his sin head-on and dealing with it. Did he fall into a routine that kept him comfortable but allowed his guard for the enemy to diminish and in turn rebel against God’s only commandment for him? It was something that should have been easy to remember. Was he swayed or distracted by the voice of another while knowing the Word of the Lord fully? You see, God spoke directly to Adam about the tree. He knew the Word of God, personally, and he chose to eat the fruit anyway. Did he not want Eve to be alone in her disobedience? Could be that too, but nonetheless, that was his choice.
But God! Our Heavenly Father had a plan of redemption through Christ Jesus!
Being blessed, as ambassadors, we need to renew our minds daily in the Word so we may mature in it and allow the Holy Spirit, the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead, to lead us on this journey. Some may think reading a scripture over and over again is boring, kind of like “Pattycake,” but there is a huge difference. The Word of God is alive! It has a purpose. It has creative power. It replaces the wrong thinking once you get it down in your heart, and it will be what you remember! When the world says your beliefs are wrong or you’re no good, the Word of God says, live by His standards because you are a beautifully made child of God who lives in victory!
Take inventory of your thoughts and routines. Do they line up with God’s standards? Have you made reading the Word and fellowshipping with God a priority in your life? Do you want to see positive change in your relationships, your finances, or in your job? Are you willing to make a quality decision and commit to following the teachings of Christ? Are you ready to take your place as an ambassador for the Kingdom of God? These are tough questions where you have to be honest with yourself. No one is perfect, and that is not the point of the questions. The point is to direct your attention to where you can get back on the plan that God chose you for by being led by the Holy Spirit, renewing your mind with the Word of God, and beholding the blessings of God that will manifest in your life so you can proclaim His glory!
God made us to be a light in the world, and to this day, I don’t know of anyone that places a lamp under a table where it is hidden. So shine bright, check your routine, and renew your mind knowing God can do more than you can ever think, ask, or imagine.