Summary: A sermon about showing the love of Christ to children.
“The Little Children and Jesus”
This past Thursday, after dropping Mary Ellen off at school, I realized I had not yet put my Mom’s Mother’s Day card in the mail…
…and that I had better stop back home real quick so that it would get there by Saturday.
As these thoughts raced through my mind, I thought about what I would write.
What would be meaningful and real?
What are some of my favorite memories about my mom?
In what ways did she influence me the most?
For what am I most grateful?
As I thought about these images, I surprised myself by getting a bit teary-eyed.
I have a GREAT mom!!!
Her influence on my life is, in many ways, directly related to why I enjoy such a fulfilling life today.
So, I thought about early memories.
I remembered how my mom used to walk me to kindergarten every morning, with our dog—“Frisky”—trotting alongside.
And I remembered, how, every Wednesday during that kindergarten year, we would go to McDonalds for lunch after she picked me up from school.
I thought about all the places and times she hauled myself and my two sisters around town with her in that old station wagon with the fake wood paneling.
And then I thought about her faith in God.
Her understanding of God’s grace.
I thought about how she would read the Upper Room devotion every morning before we could eat breakfast, and say the prayer every evening before we ate dinner together as a family.
I remembered the time when, on our way to worship, the family got into some big fight about something, and when we got to our pews—seeing my mother crying during prayer time.
I remember, as well, how we used to have to sit—all five of us—in the very front pew of the church.
And when I would ask my mother why we did this, her honest answer was: “Because there are some people who don’t feel comfortable sitting in the front. If they show up for worship, and the only seats which are vacant are in the front; they will go home.”
I remember, when I was being bullied in school, and before my mom dropped me off, she held my hand and prayed for me.
I recall watching my mom searching furiously in her purse for her check-book and quickly writing a check for the offering for the church just as the pastor was saying, “Let us now offer God, God’s tithes and our offerings.”
I remember how, when a woman in our church got in a really bad car accident which paralyzed her, my mother went to visit her every week for the next 30 years.
I remember riding along with my mother as she delivered homemade meals to church members who had lost a loved one or who were sick.
I remember having the preacher over at our house for dinner every Tuesday evening before Bible study at the church.
It was the fanciest meal of the week.
I could go on and on and on and on.
Back to that Mother’s Day Card.
I finished it by saying, “I would not be a pastor if it were not for you.”
Of course, with God, anything is possible, but my mother’s influence on my life goes deeper than anything I know.
By watching her, I learned what Christ’s love looks like in action.
And because of her, and of course, my dad, I was in Sunday school and worship every day of my life—even when we were on vacation somewhere.
And even though my parents are greatly flawed, just like all other human beings, and even though the Church is greatly flawed because God has chosen to use human beings as His Body…
…My entire being has been shaped by the Church.
I would not recognize myself if it were not for the Church of Jesus Christ.
I can’t imagine who or what I would be if it were not for the people of God.
Did I rebel a bit as a teenager?
Can I be a real pain in the neck?
Am I a major sinner?
But do I have the love of Jesus Christ in my heart?
And the reason; because I know I am loved by God…
…no matter my flaws, no matter what!!!
Am I happy?
Because of my relationship with Jesus.
Jesus is my foundation.
Jesus is my life.
But what about those who don’t know Jesus?
What about those who don’t have mothers who care for them?
What about those who are living in crack houses, or on the streets?
Or what about those children who are growing up in modern day society with t-v and the internet as their only role models?