To the Feet of Jesus
To the Feet of Jesus
“Why do we have to go to church again?” Jimmy asks. “We just went this morning; we don’t have to go every time!” Jimmy’s cousins are over and they are playing a great game of baseball. Now Mom calls them to come eat so they can get ready for services. Jimmy sighs, puts his glove down, and tells the other boys, “I was hoping we could just keep playing.”
“We want to go to services when we’re able,” Mom tells Jimmy. “Even we adults can feel tired or lazy to go sometimes. You can pray that God will give you patience to sit at services, to listen, and hear His Word. God hears the prayers of children, too.”
Jimmy remembers the words to a song they’ve sung at Sunday school. “I am not too little nor too small to pray. Jesus hears my praying and the words I say” (SHZ 449:5) “Maybe I can pray and God will help me,” Jimmy thinks.
At services the minister reads from Mark 10:13–16: “And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.”
The minister is talking about children. Jimmy listens eagerly. The minister explains that when Jesus was living, people brought their children to Him that He would bless them. Just as the people brought their children to Jesus in the time of the Bible, he says that this instruction belongs to moms and dads today. When believing parents bring their children to services they are bringing them to the feet of Jesus where they are taught about matters of faith. Here we are strengthened and encouraged.
“Your parents feel weak and poor in raising their children,” the minister says. “They feel they cannot of their own power and strength teach their children. They need to bring them to the feet of Jesus to learn.” He tells the story of a father who said he feels so poor in raising His children. The man had said, “I don’t know how to raise my children, but I do know how to bring them to services, to the feet of Jesus.”
“Sometimes we may not want to go to services,” the minister says. “For parents and children there are times when we would rather stay at home. Life is busy. Children may feel that the sermons are long. But it is often the devil that is telling us to stay home. He wants us to stay away so we aren’t around the hearing of God’s Word. We don’t want to listen to the devil. We all want to get to heaven one day. We need to take care of the gift that God has given us. At services, through the mouths of the ministers, God gives words that we need to hear to strengthen our faith and teach us. We know that we are not any better than any other person if we go to services more often. But it doesn’t help our faith if we stay away.”
“The minister is talking to me!” Jimmy thinks! “I wanted to stay home tonight and play ball!” The words of another verse of the song from Sunday school come to his mind: “I am not too little for the snares of sin. When the devil whispers, I must flee from him!” (SHZ 449:6). A tear rolls down Jimmy’s cheek as he hears the minister say, “And even to you who came with slow footsteps to hear God’s Word, you also can believe all sins forgiven in Jesus’ name and precious blood.” Jimmy is happy that his mom brought him to services when he wanted to stay home.
Photos: Dan Wuollet
“ We little ones are gathered
to listen to the Word,
for when the Spirit teaches,
the truth of God is heard.
“ We little ones are teaching;
we shine as little lights
and bring His gospel message
into the world’s dark night.
“ For Jesus loves the children
and cares for us each day;
that’s why we love and praise Him—
He washed our sins away” (SHZ 442:1,4,5).
July/August 2012 Shepherd’s Voice