Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Snowman

The day after Christmas it started to snow. I had a wonderful plan for the day. My little grandson and I would wrap up, we would go outside and build a fantastic snowman together. In my mind, our collaborative snowman would stand impressively on our front porch, and greet our neighbors. All who passed by would marvel at the creativity and the size of it. Our snowman was going to look so good! But he did not turn out quite as I anticipated. The snow would not stick together. I could not form a ball that would roll and collect more snow. The carrot that we picked out for his nose made half his head fall off. My grandson wanted the snowman to have five arms, instead of two.Then he began to cry because he was too cold. My dream was shattered. But as I cuddled him in my arms, I remembered that the most important part of this day was not how the snowman turned out, or what he looked like. The important part was the time I spent with my grandson, building a relationship that will last, rather than building something that would melt over time.
It is good to dream dreams for our ministry. It is good to have wonderful plans, and to envision in our mind what our ministry might look like. But if it doesn't turn out quite the way we anticipated, we must not lose hope. We must not worry about impressing others. We must remember that our most important role is to build relationships...with children, with parents, with families...relationships that will last, and will lead them to Jesus Christ.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Undercover Boss

A repost from December 2010...

With an audience averaging 17.7 million viewers, 'Undercover Boss' ranks as the biggest new season premiere since 1987 and the most watched premiere episode of any reality series.
Each week, 'Undercover Boss' follows a different executive as they leave the comfort of their office above to work alongside their employees below. This undercover mission allows them to share in the experiences of their employees and to obtain an up-close look at how their company works. At the end of the week, the true identity of the boss is revealed, the employees are rewarded for their hard work, and the company celebrates as everyone benefits from the experience.
Over 2000 years ago, another 'Undercover Boss' left the comfort of His office above and came down to live amongst His people on the earth below. With an audience of millions, the true identity of the boss was revealed and each Christmas, the world celebrates. What a privilege we have to be part of bringing children to discover the true identity of that 'Undercover Baby' and the eternal benefits He brings.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. John 1: 14

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Eye Contact

I stood and watched my little grandson as he played with the train set alongside several other children. At 2 or 3 years old, they were doing a pretty good job of sharing, but their parents still kept a vigilant eye just in case they needed to step in to reinforce the lesson. A little boy snatched a train from another and I watched with interest as his young mom stepped in. She crouched down alongside him and spoke gently. Look at me. She said. The boy ignored her. But she persisted, this time using his name. Josh, I need you to at look at me. Josh ignored her. His focus was still on the train he wanted. The mom would not give up. Quietly, but deliberately, she tried a third time. Josh, she said, I need to see your eyes. Right here. She motioned towards her son's eyes and then pointed to her own. Now she had his attention. Josh finally paused and turned to face her. Only when she had established that eye contact could she teach him an important lesson.
Honey, the trains are for sharing. Josh shared.
It is almost Christmas. While we are busy, and focused on what we want, God stands at our side, yearning for us to turn and face Him. God crouches down, calls us by name, and gently persists until we respond. Only when we pause, and that eye contact is established, can we truly learn the lessons He has for us.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Prayer Room Has Moved...

I was rushing through London's busy Heathrow 
airport when I saw an interesting sign. It read:
The prayer room has moved.
I stopped to take a photograph, and thought how wonderful it was that such a room was available...perhaps for those who are nervous about flying, or for those whose faith requires that they pray at certain intervals.
But how glad I am that I do not need a special room to pray...especially one that is hard to find! My prayers do not need to be said at a certain time, or in a certain place. I can pray any time. I can pray anywhere, in the sure knowledge that God, who never moves, and is never hard to find, is listening. If the children we teach can know that, then we have taught them something wonderful indeed.
When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I’ll listen.
When you come looking for me, you’ll find me. Jeremiah 29: 12-14 The Message