Now Is the Time


When it comes to kids, we’re all experts; though everyone may not have one, everyone has been one. And we all remember what it was like to be valued, loved and given a place of importance when we were young. At a Bible study I attended recently, the leader asked us, all lifelong church attenders, to recall who had been our John the Baptist, the voice calling us to “prepare the way of the Lord” in our lives. Second only to mothers were Sunday school teachers.

When we come to faith in Christ, God either builds on the experiences we had in childhood or heals us from them. The role of the Christian worker is to help ensure that there is more to build on than to overcome. Children and youth are powerful resources of the Church today. Unfortunately, their training is too often marginalized to activities that separate them from the larger Body, as if we are storing them for later use. But Jesus says that all believers—including kids—are the light of the world right now.

Years ago, I attended a small (non-Alliance) church that had a great adult Sunday school program but just playtime for the kids. One Sunday, the education director asked me to try something new: teach the children an actual Bible lesson Now Is the Time while the adults were in church. I nabbed the best student over age 12 as a helper and gave her a very short verse for the preschoolers to memorize (and they actually did!).

I took the older kids to a different room and gave each one a Bible from the lost and found box. Helping them find the text, I told them the story of Samuel, a child called by God to turn a nation back to Him. One of the boys from the rundown house across the street raised his hand. “You mean God talked to a little boy?” He was incredulous. I assured him that even though he was only in second grade, there was a plan God had for his life right now—just as He had for Samuel.

The kids in your care are vital to your church today, so engage them now. If your children’s/youth program has been placed on the back burner, fix it now. What you do with children and youth today does affect the church of tomorrow, but more importantly, it develops the spiritual character of the whole Body of Christ right now. Don’t waste a precious moment.

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