Luke and The Lost
As a former first grade teacher, I have a ton of “kid” stories to tell and have shared quite a few of them here on this daily blog. Randy was a fifth grade teacher in his past work, so he also has many stories about how kid’s minds work. Together, Randy and I are now writing a series of children’s books about living with integrity. They are designed to be picture books that relate to four to seven year old kids. To do this well, in ways that will engage a child and the parent reading to them, we must get into the minds of this age group and tell the story as they would.
Can you imagine, if you will, the story of the moms and dads bringing children to Jesus. What if this was written by a child? How would he/she tell the story? “Mother, Papa, we heard that man, Jesus is town!” “Everyone loves Him!” “Please, oh please, oh please?” The parents stop what they are doing, for they have heard about this man who teaches with strength and power in understandable ways. He heals and encourages all kinds of people. The children of the household make their case once more as their parents decide about stopping their work to go see Jesus. “Mother, Papa! Hurry, we want to SEE him!” they shout. Even the baby sitting on a blanket on the floor is excited, clapping his chubby little hands and gurgling, “Yeth, yeth”!
The parents stop work, pick up a few things for the walk and tell the kids, “We want you to see Jesus, too!” “Yea!”, shouted the children of the household. They all scurry out the door and down the path and follow others who are wanting to see Jesus, too. As they come to the place where Jesus is teaching, they stop and listen for a while. Little Sarah reaches up and tugs her mother’s dress and whispers, “when can we go to him?” “I can’t see him.” “I can hear him, though.” “He sounds so kind…mother, when?”
Finally there seems to be a pause in the speaking, Sarah and brother Isaac bolt from the crowd, taking this opportunity to go see the man everyone is talking about. Other kids follow their lead. A large hand stops them abruptly. The little ones look up into the eyes of two men who are not happy. “Yikes, I think we are in trouble!”
Then they hear the kind voice use his “dad voice” and say, “Let the children come to Me, don’t hold them back.” The kids run to Jesus as if He were their greatest friend on earth. “I knew He would like us!” “He even LOVES us like He knows us!” “I love you, Jesus”, says Sarah. She hears Him laugh. Moms and papas bring all the children to a smiling Jesus who cradles them, tickles them and then says a prayer about them. “This is the best day, ever!”, says Isaac.
Luke 18, The Message
15-17 People brought babies to Jesus, hoping he might touch them. When the disciples saw it, they shooed them off. Jesus called them back. “Let these children alone. Don’t get between them and me. These children are the kingdom’s pride and joy. Mark this: Unless you accept God’s kingdom in the simplicity of a child, you’ll never get in.”
Think about it…
–Kids have faith greater than all mustard seeds put together. If we say it, it must be true. If Jesus says it…bank on it. He is truth. (And the Way to Life eternal!)
–Simply be like a child and accept Jesus. Accept God’s Kingdom living without question. Stop exercising the analyzing and rationalizing way of living that so many adults learn to use as a crutch to justify our sin of self satisfaction. It’s exhausting.
–Be childlike in faith, not childish (not letting anyone else in). It’s not about us. It’s all about God. As children of God, His Kingdom lives in us. We now live in His ways and turn from our selfishness to live and love Him. We live to love and serve others like He loves us.
–Find and follow Jesus. Don’t let anyone hold you back.
–Run to Jesus!
“Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.” Psalm 8:2, NIV
Dear Heavenly Father,
What thoughts you give us today about a familiar story! Thank you for stirring our minds once more. I love you with all my heart, mind and soul. You created me to be pretty simple so it is easy to have faith in the King of kings and Lord of lords! Thank you for all you have done, are doing and will do in our lives. Thank you for saving us. Thank you for living in us. Thank you, Holy Spirit for guiding us.
In Jesus Name, Amen
“I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” John 10:28