Written by: Jeanette P.
This week we have been working with children ages 8 to 12. They are the sweetest children ever! I was not sure how my heart would hold enough love for more children, but somehow God makes it happen!
The greatest challenge has been breaking down the Bible stories to make them easy for the children to understand and be able to relate. Many of them have never heard of Jesus before. They don’t have any Biblical context.
However, since the children this week are a little bit older, we have been able to get a little deeper into our Bible stories. They are eager to learn and participate happily. We have a few children volunteer to act out the Bible stories as we narrate.
On Tuesday, we learned about the Shield of Faith. I narrated the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the voice of the king. Three children dressed up and acted out the parts of the three young men while another dressed up in the Armor of God and acted like the fourth person in the fire. I explained that even though it was scary to disobey the king and knew they would be thrown into a fiery furnace, the three young men had faith in God. They trusted that as long as they did the right thing and followed God, no matter what, He would take care of them. Just like those three young men, all they have to do is ask Jesus to be their friend and guide them, then God with be with them take care of them in every situation.
It was remarkable to watch each child listen carefully, their eyes focused, and you could just see the wheels turning in their minds. All I could do as I was telling the story was pray in my mind that they would truly understand that Jesus is waiting with open arms. I closed the story, explained the accompanying craft, and asked them to move to the tables. As the rest of the children were moving to the tables, one girl, Līga, asked, “How do I follow Jesus?” I told her all she had to do was ask Jesus to be her friend and invite Him into her heart- just like she would invite a friend over to her house. She said, “Right now? In English?” I responded, “Yes, right now. In whichever language you feel more comfortable.” She said, “Will you help me?” Of course, I prayed with her and gave her the biggest hug I could manage.
The children here in Latvia are lacking many tangible and intangible needs. We do our best to provide them with plenty of love, attention, experiences, and nurturing. However, I feel like spending time with them, sharing the Gospel, and planting the seeds of love and mercy in their hearts is working in my own heart as well.
I know God is great, but I feel so incredibly honored that He allowed me to witness that moment with Līga. We don’t always get to see the fruits of the seeds we plant, but God somehow chose me to be a part of that moment. That moment alone is worth more than I can express.