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Wednesday, March 19, 2014
These Amish children are intrigued by the photos I took so they gathered around me to have a look on my small camera screen. There are few things I can think of more enjoyable than being with these children who are enamored by things that are an everyday occurrence for us.
"Let The Little Children Come!"
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"People were also bringing babies to Jesus for Him to place His hands on them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. But Jesus called the children to Him and said, 'Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it'" (Luke 18:16,17).
Those who know me may associate several distinctions regarding my apparel. I almost always wear suspenders. In the winter I usually wear a hat and many of my neckties have a Bible theme! Over the years this has opened the door to numerous conversations, even with complete strangers.
Once we stopped for a meal at a Cracker Barrel restaurant. Our server noticed my Christian-themed tie and asked if I was a Christian. When I responded "Yes, I am" she enthusiastically shook my hand and loudly proclaimed, "I am too, brother, praise the Lord". She appeared to be a newer Christian and was so enthused about her faith.
She was especially happy to tell us her five-year-old son had recently asked Christ into his life. Following the salvation prayer he asked her to make a sign with the word "Saved" along with the date. He brought the camera to his mother and said "Mom, take a picture of me holding the sign." That photo will serve as an inspiring and visible reminder when the day is long or the faith is weak!
This weekend I am driving a vanload of Amish to upstate New York so they can visit family. Two couples in the van will be traveling along with their eight children. Ester will also join us so she can meet up with her friend, Hannah. During our visit last week at the Lapps we learned the children are so excited they can hardly wait to have a fun time with their cousins.
For long trips the Amish rent vans and hire drivers although since I am taking friends I don't charge them. I always end up having a great time as well! We have known one of the families since their first months of marriage and have watched each of their five children grow. The children call me Steveweber, as if both first and last names were one combined name, since that's the way their dad pronounced it early-on. These five young children certainly add genuine joy to an otherwise ordinary day, as do the children in your lives as well.
People were bringing their children to Jesus to be blessed in our daily text, but the disciples rebuked them. I suppose they thought they were doing their busy Lord a favor. He surely had better things to do than be bothered by these little children. In another account we read that Jesus was indignant at the disciples (Mark 10:14).
"But Jesus called the children to Him and said, 'Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these." It's interesting that Jesus called the children which makes a powerful statement that "The kingdom of God belongs to such as these".
Jesus goes on to say "Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it'." That's an intriguing concept but I believe it speaks to the heart of the faith that pleases God. Today, let us again, like little children, call on our faithful heavenly Father who continues to call out through His Son, "Let the little children come to me".
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, as adults we tend to complicate matters and seek to understand that which is incomprehensible. We cannot fully grasp the Kingdom of God here on earth or that You would give Your only Son to die for us, and that by doing so, we can receive forgiveness of sins. These amazing truths are hard to grasp and often keep adults from receiving by faith all that You have for us. But Jesus gives us the example of children whose learning is very basic. They don't yet know the why and wherefores of life at such an early age. But rather than Jesus instructing the children to first become like the disciples, as we would expect, He instructs the disciples to become like children. Father, help us to examine the characteristics of a child that bring You pleasure, that open our heart's door for closer communion with You. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"Jesus Loves The Little Children" Video Mike Curb Congregation
"Jesus Loves Me" Video Gaither Homecoming Singers
"Let Them Be Little" Video Billy Dean
Here's a message we wrote titled, "When Jesus Was Indignant" using the passage from Mark.
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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