Giving Your Kids Jesus Series Part III: Bring Them With You
“One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could lay his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him. But Jesus said, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.” And he placed his hands on their heads and blessed them before he left.” Mathew 19:13-15
If you or I had been alive in these times, would we have been among those parents?
I certainly hope so!
Can you imagine being there? Standing, with your children at your side, among the crowd. Seeing Jesus sitting just a few feet away – the one who preformed amazing miracles right there in front of you!
If I could have been there, you better believe I would have wanted to get close…I would have wanted my girls to meet Him!
Friends, we get the honor of bringing our children to Jesus every day.
There are a couple of definitions of “bring.”
- Cause (someone or something) to come to a place. Make (someone or something) move in a particular direction or way.
- Come to a place with (someone or something). To lead, carry, or cause to come along with one towards a place.
The first definition – “cause to come to a place…make someone move in a particular direction…” makes me think of something forceful…dragging, pulling, or pushing “making” them go somewhere.
But did you notice the difference? The second definition says, “Come to a place WITH …Lead, carry, cause to come along WITH.”
So often, if we’re honest, we operate in the first definition: we want to make our children love Jesus. We want to make them find Jesus. We want to make them move in a particular direction.
We can make our children love Jesus just about as successfully as we can make the sun come up tomorrow.
But, what we can do is Love the Lord with all of OUR heart, soul, mind, and strength, and then show our children how to do the same by brining them along WITH us.
This looks a lot more like walking hand in hand together towards the same place…Jesus.
The parents, in Matthew 19, who brought their children to Jesus had something going for them. Where were they? They were in proximity to HIM.
They positioned themselves and their families to be near Him. It doesn’t say the parent’s “sent” their children to Jesus…they were there; they were near; they brought their children along WITH them to see Jesus.
We need to position ourselves near Christ and bring our children along with us to see HIM….day after day after day.
The Passion Translation of Matthew 19 says, “Then they brought little children to Jesus so that he would lay his hands on them, bless, them and pray for them. But the disciples scolded those who brought the children, saying, ‘Don’t bother him with this now!’ Jesus overheard them and said, ‘I want little children to come to me, so never interfere with them when they want to come, for heaven’s kingdom realm is composed of beloved ones like these! Listen to this truth: no one will enter the kingdom realm of heaven unless he becomes like one of thee!’ Then he laid his hands on each of them and went on his way.”
Our days are full of opportunities to bring our children to Him, but sometimes I think we’re like the disciples. Only instead of “Don’t bother Him with this now,” it’s more like “Don’t bother ME with this now.”
Jesus is there and ready to welcome our children, but how many times are we unwilling to stop and make the most of the opportunity?
There are mornings when I know what the day holds, and I’m feeling rushed and pressured…we need to get our morning things in, get school done, run errands, get to gymnastics or dance…and I’m hollering, “Girls, come on! We need to get started with school. HURRY up and finish your Jesus time!”
I’m sorry, what?! My children are cultivating their relationship with JESUS, and I’m saying “HURRY UP!”
That’s like the day I told Ellie that she couldn’t have more carrot sticks until she finished her chips?! (facepalm!)
There are many moments throughout any given day that I’m busy doing my thing, working on my tasks, thinking about my agenda and something comes up with the girls. They come running…maybe it’s a conflict between the two of them or maybe something one of them is personally struggling with. Before I realize it, the words “not now” or “we don’t have time for this” come out of my mouth.
These are teachable moments. These are moments to savor. These are moments to slow down. Take your children by the hand and walk with them towards Jesus. These are opportunities to bring peace where there is conflict, to demonstrate repentance and forgiveness, and to sow the Word of God into their hearts.
“Don’t bother me with this now.”
Whenever we have this thought as a parent, it should be like a warning siren going off in our heads! Warning! Warning! Red Flag! Stop. Slow down. Evaluate the situation. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you see things from His perspective.
All of a sudden, you may find that the most inconvenient moments becomes the most impactful moments.
Jesus said, “I want little children to come to me, so never interfere with them when they want to come…”
Let us never stand in the way and interfere with the opportunities we have to bring our children to Jesus.
Matthew 18:5-6 says, “And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me. But if you cause one of these little ones who trusts in me to fall into sin, it would be better for you to have a large millstone tied around your neck and be drowned in the depths of the sea.”
So, there’s that. (gulp!)
We get the awesome privilege, honor, and responsibility of bringing our children to Jesus. Daily. And when we do this…they will be welcomed. “And he placed his hands on their heads and blessed them.”
If we will be intentional in brining our children to Jesus, He will not disappoint. He loves our children more than we can imagine.
I am at the place that I know, that I know, that I know, at the end of the day I want to have brought my children to Jesus. No matter what else you do with your children today…bring them WITH you to meet with Him.