Mark 19:14 But Jesus said, "Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven."
Mark 10:15 "Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it."
This last weekend was our annual Children's Encounter Weekend at church. When you have the opportunity to be involved with Kid's Church you begin to really see the truth of Mark 10:15. I wasn't able to be there as much this year as in years past but I know that God was doing big things there. Nothing is quite as amazing as watching young children begin to grab hold of God's truth's and start to move forward in the call He has on their lives.
The Encounter is a time where kids ages 6-12 get to encounter God... this isn't a playtime 'retreat,' it is way past that. Yes there are some short playtimes for the kids, but primarily it is a time of focused learning, to grow in the things of God at a level they can understand. Where adults go to an encounter only once, the kids generally come every year, and for good reason-- children have different levels of understanding, what they understand at 6 is different than the work the Lord does in them at 12. It all works together as building blocks for the rest of their lives. What I can tell you is that these kids are changed, the basics are the same each year but each year is also different as the Lord gives the children's pastors a different focus for the Encounter. This year the focus was "Givin' it all."
Through the course of the lessons the children all determined what they wanted to give away so that they could give it all for the Lord. Toward the end of the weekend the kids all wrote on balloons what they were going to give away, then they released them. Giving those things away that get in the way of their relationship with the Lord, so that they could grow closer to to Him. The thing they choose is different for each child.
We can learn from this... what things do we need to release to the Lord so that we can grow closer? During my brief time there this year, the Lord touched me... yes, we adults can be touched during a time that teaching is 'for kids' if we have the heart of a child, the willingness to receive when God is giving-- Learning to trust God completely, trusting our Heavenly Father.
Years ago when Crystle, our oldest, was only 8 months old she fell sound asleep in Glenn's arms. We were in the middle of a busy room and there she slept, oblivious to the goings on around her. And Glenn looked at me and said simply... this is the faith of a child, and what God calls us to, the ability to trust the Lord and rest in Him, no matter what is going on. During the brief period I was at the Kid's Encounter the Lord reminded me of this... I had been struggling with some fear recently, and during the session as the kid's were being prayed over, to give their fear to the Lord-- God touched me, He reminded me that I needed to release it, to give it to Him... I could quit holding onto it, so I did, I let it go... I wish I could have been at the balloon release because I think I might have grabbed one and written 'fear' on it because that is what I released. I have let it go before but this time at a new level... I am so excited that as I was giving to the kids that God loves me so much that He touched me, reminding me yet again that He is always present and there for me.
The beautiful thing about the Lord, He is the perfect Father... I have a wonderful dad, he loves me and always has, he's been supportive of me for as long as I remember, he also disciplined me as I grew up. All in all I was blessed with a dad that reflected to me the Love of my Father in heaven. I know that there are many who are not as fortunate, but the Lord is accessible to everyone. He is a Father that is always there; 24/7, He cares about every aspect of our lives.
We simply need to ask Him into our lives, we need to be like children-- trusting our Heavenly Father to care for us and let us rest in His arms like Crystle rested in Glenn's arms so long ago.
If you don't already know Jesus as your Lord and would like to know more then click here to learn more on how you can have a relationship with Him, and begin to know and understand God as your Father.
Then understand what it means to release and Give It All!!