Like a childWritten by Rev._Smith on Apr 06, 2011 in Pastor's Blog - No Comments
Having faith like a child is something that we in the Church talk about often, but unless you take the time to talk to a young child about Jesus, his life, death, and resurrection, then I don’t think you really understand this teaching of our Lord.
Every month I have the honor of teaching 3 and 4 year old children about God during their chapel time at their preschool. I have been challenged to consider how I will share about our faith, rich and deep as it is, with children who developmentally have the attention span of a couple of minutes and are in the early stages of expanding their comprehension levels. Sometimes I know they get it, other times I wonder, but every time is deeply rewarding.
Today, the lesson was on the final week of Jesus ministry leading into his death and resurrection. I began telling the story and instantly realized that I could not tell the story without saying that Jesus died. My initial inclination was to soften it, not say the word “dead” or “died” in order to protect them. “They are too young!” I thought, “What are you doing?! Let them live in a land of magic, bunnies, and candy a little longer.” Thankfully,I pressed on and told the basic story as clearly as possible without editing.
Brothers and Sisters, even now, over an hour later I am amazed at how they hung on every word and they asked questions that put pastors and scholars to shame. These children wanted to know more, they knew that telling lies when Jesus was on trial was wrong. That betraying your friend was bad. Yet the best comment came at the end from one of the children that rarely listens; “Pastor Shawn? Jesus is really special.”
Yes, Jesus is special and if we in the Church, especially the officers of the Church, were required to tell the basic story of Jesus to least of these then I know the Spirit will transform us from creating faith communities that serve us into congregations that serve God!