Jesus’ Heart for Children
If I asked you to use only one word to describe a child, I wonder what you’d say. Loud? Messy? Silly? Cute? Tiring? I wonder how Jesus would describe children. The truth is, we don’t have to wonder. Luke 18:15-17 tells us about the time when Jesus rebuked his disciples for sending children away from him. He said to them, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God” (v.16). Jesus has a heart for children, and at BPCC we do too.
We’ve had a great start to the year across our Children’s ministries. At Kidz Church we are trying a few changes to our usual program – with more time for games and chatting at the start of the morning, as well as delivering the main teaching message in a large group in the shed. This is bringing new energy and we have already seen a difference in the children’s enthusiasm and engagement with the program and the Bible teaching, which is worth celebrating. We are also intentionally offering regular opportunities for our children to respond to God’s offer of salvation by receiving Jesus. Of course, we always encourage the children to share this wonderful news with you, their parents.
Our Children’s Library is up and running with a selection of Christian books, magazines, and DVDs set up in a cosy corner of the shed. For the last couple of weeks, the books have been available to enjoy on a Sunday morning at Kidz Church only, but from next term the children will be able to borrow an item for a couple of weeks. We hope and pray the library will provide another opportunity for our kids to be strengthened in their Christian faith and to safely explore and learn more about our God.
To keep up to date with everything that’s happening in Kidz Church and Jnr Kidz Church, be sure to join our Facebook group – BPCC Kidz Church. Each week I’ll share about what the children have been learning and doing, as well as some simple ideas you can do at home to keep the discussion going throughout the week.
School holidays are fast approaching. Did you know Scripture Union runs camps across the Easter holiday break? There are heaps of camps on offer for primary and secondary aged children, with amazing activities – abseiling, water sports, archery, tribal wars, beach games, and more. As well as having heaps of fun, the children spend time exploring the Bible and looking at the big questions in life, with fully qualified leaders. To find out more, go to www.sucamps.org.au.
With Easter falling at the end of the holidays this year, we have a wonderful opportunity to spend time preparing our hearts and the hearts of our children for the celebration of Easter. Why not make palm branches (or use real ones) and decorate the dinner table and your entry with them? Talk about Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and how the people called ‘Hosanna’ as he went by. Ask your children what they might shout if they saw Jesus coming down the road today. Fill a bucket with water, grab a few towels and wash each other’s feet. Remember when Jesus washed his disciples’ feet and take time to pray for each other. Visit a garden or a park and pray there. Chat about Jesus praying in the Garden of Gethsemane and spend time reflecting on what Jesus may have been feeling. Make a cross out of wood. Write down an attitude or action from the past week that you need forgiveness for and pin it to the cross. Talk about how Jesus suffered the punishment for all of our sins, so that we would not have to.
Jesus has a heart for children; he called them near. As we prepare for Easter, let us call our children near, so that together we can prepare our minds and hearts to receive and respond to the good news of what Jesus has done for us. Blessings.