Summary: SOME PEOPLE ARE JUST WAITING TO SEE FAITH MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN THE LIVES OF CHRIST’S FOLLOWERS.
Trustbusters Sermon #2:
Trust and Children
Some people are just waiting to see faith make a difference in the lives of Christ’s followers. They want to see it work. They are not asking too much. As God’s Spirit is allowed to inform and transform it builds trust in those watching. If we live in such a manner as to undermine God’s values and promises it erodes trust.
In Mark 9 Jesus began to show us that discipleship expresses itself through relationships. In chapter 10 that theme is extended into more complex relationships that include elements of society. Mark 9:50 serves as a good transition between the two … it hits the nail on the head. Mk 9:50 “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with each other.”
Last week we looked at “Trust and Marriage” (Mark 10:1-12).
In coming weeks we will look at
• Trust and Possessions (Mark 10:17-31)
• Trust and Duty (Mark 10:32-45)
• Trust and Opportunity (Mk. 10:46-52)
But this week we will look at Mark 10:13-16.
Mk 10:13 People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them.
Mk 10:14 When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
Mk 10:15 I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
Mk 10:16 And he took the children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.
>>Show the SermonSpice video on children<<
May I begin by telling you a story? It should more accurately be referred to as a discovery.
A few years back while at a district Assembly in Baltimore my wife and I were walking down a hallway on our way to an ordination service. I am dressed in my best black suit; all prepared to be part the supportive pastors who lay hands on the ordinands during the prayer time.
As we walked down the back hallway I passed the nurseries. One was for infants and one was for toddlers.
Nurseries never have enough workers.
I paused. I looked at my wife and said, “I’m gonna work the nursery instead of going to the ordination service.” I walked in the toddler nursery door, introduced myself (still in my best black suit), and asked if they needed help. Within moments I was registered and ready to go.
I didn’t know what to do so, still in my best black suit, I walked to the center of the room, looked at all the little guys and gals scooting around, and sat down on the floor. It was remarkable. Like magnets many of them began to gravitate in my direction. Little girls sat on my lap and played with plastic blocks and little boys climbed on me like I was a jungle-gym … for two hours!
Well, when my wife came back to pick me up after the service I was exhausted … and exhilarated! I saw Jesus that night, right there in that floor in my best black suit. I saw him in the eyes and the presence of those little toddlers.
This passage in Mark has been appropriately called the Magna Carta of the children. It gives us clear insight into Jesus’ opinion of children. It shows us God’s (God in Flesh) approach towards children.
Children, like wives, were considered property and without rights. They would have been considered as part of the marginalized … the underprivileged of society. To say they were treated as unimportant would be a gross understatement.
This incident throws a flood light on the character of Jesus … the character of God.
First and foremost, Jesus loved to be around children. Contrary to popular belief, Jesus must have smiled easily and laughed joyously. Children must have been attracted to him.
Children can be a pretty good judge of character. They seem to be able to look into the eyes of an adult and sense reason to fear or reason to be at peace. They seem drawn to people with pure hearts. I watch children as they naturally gravitate to children’s ministry workers. I see children’s pastors with kids flocking to them because of their pure hearts. It’s a beautiful sight!
I can see Jesus smiling with children. I can see Jesus playing with children because he was pure in heart and children could sense it. If you can’t see Jesus doing that then you need a new understanding of Jesus!
This story is beautiful. Did you notice what the parents were wanting? They just wanted Jesus to touch the children and consequently bestow a blessing them. But Jesus wanted more! It tells us that he took the children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.