My 10-year-old buddies and I were messing around in a home under construction in our neighborhood. It was night time. We weren’t damaging anything, but we shouldn’t have been in there.
“Hey, you kids!” we heard from a truck pulling over in front of the house. Man, did we scram!
Getting called out isn’t always a bad thing, though.
“Hey, you kids!” the server at the restaurant says to a few tables of high schoolers having a good time, and he hands out ice cream sundaes.
I’ve started calling out kids in my Sunday sermon messages. Not just the children’s message, we have that, too. But in the big, main “adult” message. Because our church is committed to families worshipping together, kids remain in worship. It’s a wonderful family environment.
But their attention span isn’t matured yet. So two or three times I’ll stop and say, “Hey, kids!” Then ask a question that they can answer. It helps me make a point, and the adults love it because it gives them a break as they soak in God.
So, imagine my delight when I was studying Ephesians 6 this week, and discover that this isn’t a new idea.
The apostle Paul called out kids when he wrote the letter to the church in Ephesus. He expected that the children would be listening to someone read this letter, or perhaps reading it themselves. And he called them out!
“Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right” (Ephesians 6:1). See that? He’s calling out the kids. Talking directly to them.
God’s Word is for everybody. And no matter what your intellect, attention span, or maturity level, God has something he wants to tell you.
By the way, Jesus suggested that adults should be more like children, anyway, when it comes to believing him and following him. So let’s keep kids close.
PRAYER: Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for loving kids. Thank you for your own Son, who spoke to children and blessed them. Thank you for loving my own children more than I ever can. And thank you for calling me your child. Amen.
FURTHER MEDITATION: Slow down on this Monday, and take a moment to meditate in Word and prayer about being a perfect child of God, who adopted you and in baptism made you a believer in his family. Say a prayer using the PRAY acronym.
- Praise (tell God what you appreciate about his child)
- Repent (tell God about your sins, rejoice in the gospel of your spiritual adoption)
- Ask (request that God work on you to develop a more child-like faith that trusts more easily, and see joy more quickly)
- Yield (talk to God about the next step after you say “Amen,” how you want faith to lead the way, how you are willing to be part of his answer and see it develop for your good)