The Voice of Zion September 2023 - Editorial --
In our everchanging world, everything has its time. Generations pass, and new children are born. Each child is born at the precise time God has intended. It is no accident that those who are children now are meant to live as children in this very moment. It is as God intended.
God has given each of us the gift of life, a span of years in which to live on this earth. God knows what kind of time we are born into. He means for us to be here now, to do our work and His work and to live through the phases of our lives. In the span of a person’s life, each phase has its place – everything happens in its own time (Eccl. 3:1).
We each are given roles and tasks and the gifts with which to fulfill them. Our Lord, in whose kingdom we dwell, leads us and shows us our place and our duties. His kingdom is our refuge in this world at all stages of our lives.
Throughout all our experiences, the light of God’s Word shines. The light of His Spirit shines even from within us. Children, too, shine this light as they go about daily life, at school and at play.
Being a light unto the world means living in a way that reflects the teachings and example of Jesus, spreading goodness and love and compassion through one’s actions and attitudes. It means having a positive influence in one’s surroundings, perhaps showing others God’s truth and where God’s kingdom is.
At school, children and young ones can model kindness among their peers: helping others, including others and supporting those with challenges are all ways to practice kindness. Respecting others is also important. Schoolchildren show respect to schoolteachers and staff and also toward peers. We want to follow rules as well and show respect to authority. We can show respect toward the class and its activities by participating fully, setting a good example and being a good sport.
In all our conduct at school, we want to do what’s right and good. Goodness is a fruit of the Spirit that dwells in the heart of a believer. A believing schoolchild exhibits this goodness in speech and actions and thoughts. It is good and right to be honest and fair. We strive to be forgiving toward those who do not treat us with love.
In our school day, we may encounter those children and adults who live in ways that are contrary to what God’s Word teaches. God has given us the duty of treating all people, including the ones we encounter at school, with compassion and gentleness. These qualities are part of the light that shines from within us. In the light of God’s Spirit, God can reveal His truth and His Word to any human.
With eyes of faith, we view the world we live in. This is our time, our world. Around us, we see beauty and we can also see suffering, the suffering that is caused by sin and turning away from God’s Word. The light of God’s Spirit, our words and our actions proclaim the word of peace: there is yet time to find grace and the key to eternal life. Jesus still saves.
Dear schoolchild, wherever you are, the light of your faith shows. You don’t have to do anything special for this to happen. When you are a believer and conduct yourself as a believer, others notice. They notice the fruits of the Spirit, which include gentleness and goodness. On some occasions, we can explain to others how we believe.
Being a believer doesn’t place you above your schoolmates. You don’t have to feel that you need to be anything other than what you are. When a person tries extra hard to be or do something to set themselves apart, that is called self-righteousness.
Instead, the light shines from you even through your own faults and imperfections. God allows this to happen. This serves a double purpose: it helps protect against falling into sin, and also it calls the world by example.
As a believer, you may feel separate from the world in some ways. Perhaps there are school activities you cannot participate in because they might damage your conscience. It is okay if you feel separate in some way. This can help remind you that you are a believer and it might remind you of why you want to remain a believer. You can see a blessing even in this.
May God bless your school year!