Experience silence in the midst of your busy day. Take some time to relax into a time to be with God.
Luke 18:15-17 (NRSV)
People were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them; and when the disciples saw it, they sternly ordered them not to do it. But Jesus called for them and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.”
The Cumberland Presbyterian church in Dickson, Tennessee has a problem: We are having a baby and toddler growth spurt. What a great problem to have! We have some of the sweetest little ones. They get so excited about coming to church. When they see their teachers, they often squeal their names and run to them, arms wide open for a hug.
On Sunday mornings, the congregation has a special time for the children to come to the front of the church where they hear a short lesson geared toward them. At the end of that time, Mrs. Mary, who leads their lesson most Sundays, asks the children if one of them would like to pray. Hands fly up quickly. I’ve heard some of the most precious, heartfelt prayers from these sweet children, who take prayer very seriously. There’s no acting silly during prayer time.
To my knowledge, no one has ever complained about this time with the children. The congregation wants the children to know that they are important and are as much a part of the church as the oldest member. They aren’t just the future of the church… they are the church.
Jesus let his disciples know how important children were to him. He chastised the disciples for keeping the children from him, telling them that the children did not bother him. He continued by saying that people who come to the kingdom of God should do so with the simple and pure faith of a child. Jesus was aware that the uncomplicated faith of a child is the purest form of love; that faith is the love we should emulate. Let’s remember Jesus’ words the next time we see children participating in a worship service and getting excited about church.
Creator God, we love you and we love your children! Let us remember to make children feel valued, important and integral parts of our church. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Go with God.