Be Like Little Children

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me. Don’t stop them, because the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” – Mark 10:14-15

At one point in Jesus’ ministry people, presumably parents and grandparents, were bringing small children to Jesus. His disciples responded by rebuking them, essentially trying to get them to go away and leave Jesus alone. This was Jesus, after all, the one who taught and healed so many; surely he had important things, adult matters, that he must attend to!

Jesus’ reply was to rebuke the rebukers. Children are important, he assured them while he took the little ones into his arms. Oh, and by the way, God’s kingdom is for the children and if you don’t receive it like a child then you won’t have a place in it.

Strong words for these men who followed him.

So, what is it that sets children apart? What is it that we must imitate? In some ways we are to be decidedly not child-like. Upon coming to Jesus, being reborn as spiritual infants, we are to feed and be fed on God’s word and grow into mature spiritual adulthood (Hebrews 5:11-6:3, 1 Peter 2:2-3).

But in another sense, we should always remain very child-like in faith. What sets children apart from adults is how freely they trust. Sadly, in a sin-stained world, such trust can be abused to the child’s harm; but this is not so with God. God is perfect in love as the great Father. He may discipline us for our good, but he never abuses and causes harm.

Our trust in God is to be childlike, unhindered and free. We’re to see him as the Good Father who always does what is best for his children. We’re to see him as the Great Provider who gives us what we need and beyond what we need for eternal joy. We’re to see him as the Solid Rock to whom we anchor our lives and future hope.

We’re to come to him to be received by him and be blessed by him, without hindrance or hesitation, because that is the very thing he calls us to through Jesus. We’re to have the trust of a child because, if we belong to Jesus by faith, then we are God’s children, and we can rest secure and happy in his arms.

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Image taken and modified with permission from pixabay.com.

Good Reads 01.03.17 (on: Bible reading, praying for your children, and more!)

Here is a collection of good reads gathered from across the internet this past week. Enjoy!

On Bible reading: 5 Ways Daily Bible Reading Impacts Your Life by Kelly Needham

Reading the Bible is like stepping into God’s house. Everything is there because He desires for it to be there. If it is in the Word of God, which lasts forever, then it must be important to Him. As I read Leviticus, I am confronted with the reality that there is a whole book dedicated to different types of sin and their corresponding offerings. If it was important to God for this to be in His Word, I must conclude that our sin really, really, really bothers Him and that all sin, no matter how small, must be paid for.

The passages in the Bible that are the most confusing and most surprising actually tell me a lot about God. Instead of skipping or avoiding things you don’t understand, ask God why that particular passage is important to Him. Ask what it tells you about His character. Grow to love Him for who He is, not who you want Him to be. (click here to read more)

On New Year’s goals: 23 Realistic Goals for 2017 by Jeremy Howard

13. Pray over your children.
Have you ever taken a moment to walk into your child’s room while she was sleeping and pray for her? If you have, you know how special that is. Do it more often. Pray that your child(ren) will be filled with wisdom from above. If your children are older — or even out of the house — they need your prayers even more. (click here to read more)

On church and the decisions you make in life: Do You Make Life Decisions with Your Church in Mind by Joshua Hedger

Do you consider the church in the decisions of your life? Do you ask yourself how your job change could affect your church? Do you consider how your moving would impact the work of God through your church in your community? Do you seek insight into how your decision to leave or stay at your local church would affect the advancement of the gospel?

Chances are, like so many of us so many times, you don’t think about the church very much in these decisions. “If decision A was better for me, then it must be the right decision.” I didn’t pay much attention to how that decision impacted the rest of the church. But what we see in Paul’s thought process here was a communal and missional mindset in his decision process. He thought about how his decision would affect the community of Christians (the church) and the mission (the advancement of the gospel). (click here to read more)

On “Amazing Grace” and the new year: God Has Brought Me Safe Thus Far by Tony Reinke

At the start of every year, Newton set aside a day to reflect on life. He was at one time a hardened sailor in the slave trade. He was broken and humbled and redeemed. And he was aware of the ongoing grace upholding his life. And his future was completely in the hands of God’s mercy, too. Like David, Newton saw grace in 3D — past, present, and future. (click here to read more)

 

Christmas Week 2016

A reminder for your week:

Children’s Christmas Program, Wednesday 12/21 @7pm (if you have children in the program, please have them to the auditorium by 6pm for costumes and a final dress rehearsal). This date is the rescheduled date due to weather conditions.

Christmas Eve Service, Saturday 12/24 @6:30pm. Join us for our annual candle-light service, with snacks and hot chocolate to follow.

Christmas Day Service, Sunday 12/25 @10:45am. We will gather at our normal time on Christmas morning to celebrate Jesus. Sunday School will also be at 9:45am for those able to make it. There will be no evening church activities on 12/25, 12/28, or 1/1.

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Sunday 09.06.15 (God’s Magnificence)

This Sunday guest speaker George Quillin of Fairview Baptist Church speaks on the topic of God’s Magnificence from Nahum 1:2-7 while pastor Mike is out of town. Come check it out!

Schedule
@945 Small Groups / Sunday School for all ages
@1045 Worship Gathering
***No Evening Activities enjoy this Labor Day weekend!***

Awana Begins Wednesday!
Awana begins this Wednesday (9/9). Clubs run throughout the school year, each Wednesday school is in session, from 630-8pm. Clubs available for students from 3yo to the 12th grade. Check out the Activities page for more info.

awana facebook profile (wed)