Monday, June 20, 2005

"Let the Children Come to Me"

I can't help but wonder why so many Christian parents insist on dropping their kids off at the church nursery before going in to worship. Do they believe that their children won't get anything out of the service? Are they under the impression that the proper mediums of worship for youngsters are crayons, glitter and macaroni? Or is it because they simply don't want any unnecessary distractions from the grown-up worship experience?

Yesterday at church, I found myself sitting next to a family who thought enough to bring their young daughter, who looked to be less than two years old, into the sanctuary. Like most kids her age, the little girl was a bit fidgety, but she didn't disrupt the service in the least. Even the brief coos and cries that emanated periodically from other children throughout the congregation didn't put a damper on our morning worship.

Consider the words of Mark 10:13-16:
    And they were bringing children to him that he might touch them, and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, "Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it." And he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them.
In Luke 18:15, we are told that the people "were bringing even infants to him." Is there a principle here that can be applied to the way we worship today?

Just something to think about the next time you're tempted to dump the little urchins into Sunday morning daycare.

3 comments:

Peter D. Nelson said...

Lovely post however, I sincerely hope that you think the same thing when some three year old screams her displeasure at the top of her lungs over the voice of the pastor or the choir who might be singing. And also at that moment look kindly upon the face(s) of the embarrassed parents as they try valiently to calm the child.

Speaking as a father of three grown children.

Lee Shelton said...

I just think that, as a rule, families should try to worship together. Of course, there will be times when children may have to be removed temporarily--and proper "discipline" administered.

Speaking as a former child. :-)

Mr. Orthodox said...

You know, I always thought Jesus' plea made a good case for infant baptism.

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