“Suffer the Children to Come unto Me”

justicenmeThese famous words Jesus spoke can be found in Matthew 19:14.

When Jesus’ disciples became annoyed with the children and pushed push away their little, germ-filled hands, Jesus rebuked them. He told them to bring the children to him instead of turning them away. His heart felt a special burden for those little people. Jesus’ concern for young children should translate into the same for his disciples.

This short but sweet passage had a gigantic impact on my life. For the last 9 years, I have been in a teenage youth group or serving as a youth group leader. I never volunteered long term to serve in a children’s ministry or nursery. If I wasn’t annoyed by them, I was avoiding them out of fear. They do have tons of hard questions they want answered you know!

Earlier this spring, my church leadership approached me with a question: Would I be willing to serve as a Children’s Ministry Assistant full time?

I immediately said no. I did not want to consider leaving the teens and working with young children. I was comfortable in my arena and enjoyed having discussions with teens closer to my age. To my shame, I was so confident about my refusal that I did not even speak to my wife or my Lord about the matter.

Later that day, after speaking with my wife and sensing the conviction of the Spirit, I decided to meet with the children’s pastor and hear more about the position.

After weeks of prayer, I realized that this decision was from the Lord. While I was learning many lessons with the teens, God had much to teach me about children. I was informed that “If I can teach to children, I can easily teach adults.”

As of May 20th, I am the Children’s Ministry Assistant at Colonial Baptist Church in Cary, NC. Wrapping up my first week, I have absolutely loved the opportunities to minister and teach. God is working in my heart and letting me open up to the children. I still have a long way to go, but I pray that with my Savior, I will also say…

“Suffer the Children to Come unto Me.”

Would you pray with me as I work with these precious little people?

Joshua

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