This past weekend as a Vintage Church family, we had the opportunity to celebrate God's gift of children [Psalm 127]. We dedicated 7 young children to the Lord as the parents and our church family both made commitments to allow God to work through us to raise and train each child to follow and serve Jesus Christ.
As I reflected on our vKids this weekend, God gave me a new understanding for why they are a blessing for both the parents and church family. One of the main ways they bless is the way in which they help teach us some of the spiritual realities that can be hard to grasp at times. By this I mean that children provide a picture of our relationship with God.
Jesus knew this and even used children as an illustration in this way. In Mark 10, as he discusses the faith needed to enter the Kingdom of God, he says "I assure you, anyone who doesn't have their [children around him] kind of faith will never get into the Kingdom of God." Jesus is referring to the innocence and complete reliance that children naturally have in their parents as a picture of the way each of us should relate to God the Heavenly Father.
This picture shows our relationship with God in this way: new life always comes through faith in Jesus Christ. Paul discusses this in Romans 3:22-24. You and I can have all of the knowledge in the world about God and Scripture, but experiencing the full effect of salvation in our lives happens when we trust in God's work through Jesus Christ. No matter how much you learn the point of transformation in life only comes when you trust in that which you know about Him. Children are trusting by nature. Humans have been made in such a way to trust in God the Heavenly Father.
For me this is a liberating truth that breaks my reliance in myself and my performance. The Gospel isn't about what you do or don't do for God. The Gospel is about what God has already done for you and I through Jesus Christ. "The Gospel isn't based on your goodness, it's based on His goodness" - Scott Thomas Gospel Coach.
So the lesson is that in the same way that a 3 year old trusts in his/her father's love to care for, provide for and protect him, so you and I trust in the Heavenly Father. As our Father, He loves us, cares for us, provides and protects us. I pray you will believe this truth and maybe surrender your life to Him today.
We are thankful for all of the families that are a part of our 2 campuses. Children, with their joy, energy and excitement truly are such a blessing. I don't know what it's like to be a father yet, but Pastor Rob and Pastor Dustin continually share lessons they are learning through the children God has given them.
Some other blogs:
- Fathers read: "How I Pastor My Family" - Justin Hyde
- Mothers read: "Missional Mothering" - Jani Ortlund
- Singles read: "8 Reasons Why Single Men Should Work in the Church Nursery" - Mark Driscoll