Monday, August 11, 2014

Children's Ministry Matters Because We Need God!

Do you remember a few years back when the nightly news asked, "Since chimps show compassion to one another is morality in our genes? If it is, why do we need religion?" It seems there has been a lot of attention given by the media to "knowledgeable" people who say we no longer need religion or God. As a parent, grandparent and someone who serves in children's ministry I find this disturbing.

I have noticed there is a strong move in education and the media towards eastern religions and the belief we all can choose any god we want because they are all the same. Schools teach extreme environmentalism with the idea of  "Mother Earth" and seem to be intent on convincing children there are no absolutes. Our children are bombarded from the time they get up in the morning to the time they go to bed with these ideas in both subtle and very overt messages. They are told they do not need God and yet the truth is we all need God . . . more so now than ever. In spite of the messaging our children hear every day, we do need God and most wonderfully . . . we can know, love and serve Him because He loves us!

So, if we are "naturally moral" do we still need God? First of all, just because we can show compassion it doesn't mean we are "naturally moral". We all have a sin nature - even a brief look at the news shows this fact. Just because we are kind sometimes it does not mean we do not need God. Being kind to others will not bring us forgiveness of our sin. We need God for forgiveness. God made us because He wanted to know us. He wanted a relationship with us. Inside each of us is the desire to know and walk with Him, too. Just being kind to others does not fill this need to know and walk with God.

Yes being compassionate and kind to others enables us to help meet real needs, such as the need for food, clothes and clean water, but it doesn't do anything for our deepest and most important needs . . . those of being forgiven and being able to know and walk with God. We need God for these and we need to let our children know this!

This is why children's ministry matters . . . we have a very important message children - and adults - need to hear! I was reading Nehemiah 9 where it talked about the history of Israel; the people knew and followed God, then they got comfortable and forgot Him. They experienced hardships at the hands of their enemies and turned back to God. While He could have left them to figure out what to do on their own, God consistently showed mercy and grace and helped them. The people turned back to God and walked with Him again, until they became comfortable and forgot Him again. This pattern happened over and over again in Bible times; and it is happening in our times, too. We are comfortable in our 21st century lives and we have forgotten God. This is sad, but the amazing news is God will show mercy and grace to us and forgive us if we turn to Him! This is why children's ministry matters . . . we need God and God wants us to know and walk with Him; this is a message children and families need to hear today in 2014! Thank you for sharing this message with the children and families in your church and community!

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