Sunday, November 4, 2018

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Children: Model and Citizens 
Luke 18:15-17

Let the little children come to me (Luke 18:16).
 The passage is all about Jesus' final journey to Jerusalem. Two themes stand out here. One is the growing tension between and Jewish leaders and the other is Jesus' preparation of disciples for his departure. I would like to highlight two aspects for our meditation.
1. Children are Citizens of God's Kingdom: In ancient culture, children could be seen but not heard. They were left on society's fringe until they were old enough to be useful. The child's age is indicated through a combination of terms. Yet whatever their age, they were too young to be considered important by some in the crowd. The disciples saw the attempt to bring children to Jesus as inappropriate. But Jesus interfered and rebuked the disciples, and insisted that they should not hinder children. Jesus immediately proclaimed that the kingdom belongs to them.
2. Children are Model Disciples: Basically children trust their parents and rely on them. So disciples should rely on their Father. To be a part of the kingdom, we must receive it in the way a child walks through life. God accepts those who run into their Father's arms, knowing that he will care for them. The specific chapter Luke 18 is all about discipleship. The passages before and after the present reading is all about the need for disciples' trust which eventually leads to service.

Today we observe this Sunday as World Sunday School Day. We remember Robert Raikes who pioneered the Sunday School movement. He was very much aware that children belong to the kingdom and that they should be nurtured in faith in God. It is our responsibility to 'bring every child to Jesus', for theirs is the kingdom of God.
Dear Lord, help us value our children and enable us to train them in your knowledge, Amen.
Nurture the children in a way to build God's kingdom.
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church