Out of the mouths of babes. . .
Yesterday I was teaching HiSKidZ about when the Israelites built and worshipped a golden calf because they became impatient and worried when Moses had not returned down from the mountain yet. In doing some review, I asked the kids something like, “What kind of people were the Israelites?”
Several kids shouted out the answer our lesson alluded to, “Impatient.” Although one of my little boys shouted out repeatedly, “Bad! Bad! They were bad, bad, bad!”
I had to smile, and then explain, that God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, weren’t necessarily, “bad, bad, bad.” But they were misguided, impatient and making some pretty unwise choices. Something they did from time to time. We all agreed that the golden calf was one probably one of their top ten, especially since they already understood the “no other Gods before me” and “no idols” commandments even before they were etched into stone.
We then talked about whether or not we ever put anything in place of God, and of course, we realized that we did. I thought the kids did a good job thinking through some of the things they often put in spot #1. Here were the top 3 we talked about yesterday (in no particular order).
#1 Stuff–HiSKidZ verbalized that wanting stuff, small and large, often took first place. They saw where they often gave into a temptation to keep their money for themselves because they wanted something rather than give it to God. When there is a big offering need like at camp or VBS, they would give, but day to day, it seems like Wal-Mart gets more of their heart than the Lord.
#2 Sports and Hobbies–The kids told me that this is a big struggle for them. Having to choose between sports and hobbies and time with God and church is a pretty big battle. One child admitted there are times when they would rather choose church, but parents encourage them to keep their commitment to the team. Yet, church is also a team, a family, and a body created by God–a team that is better when all players are in attendance, and a team many of them have committed to.
#3) Friends–We also discussed how HiSKidZ could easily be tempted to follow their friends rather than follow God. Whether it be skipping church to stay all night at a friend’s house or giving into temptation to treat others badly, disobey at school or break the rules set by parents. Kids felt like without good constant reminders, their friends could easily become idols in their lives.
Mama Mia! HiSKidZ had their thinking caps on, and they reminded me of a couple of very important principles.
Principle #1) Like the Israelites, they aren’t ready to be without good leadership in their lives. They need a Moses to teach them, lead them and remind them that God needs to be #1 and anything else will be 2nd best—even if it’s shiny and made of gold.
Principle #2) HiSKidZ are looking to you, moms and dads, to be that Moses and to give them that leadership. There are times when they want you to say “no” to the idol and “yes” to God for them, because they aren’t mature enough to do it for themselves yet. They need you to remind them that “when they think they can’t wait, they need to remember what is true.”
Principle #3) They need to know what God’s Word says in order to know how to follow Him. They need you to share the Word with them–and not just the “Do’s and Don’ts” but the hows and whys. They need you growing in the Word, so that they you can help them to grow in the Word.
And what is true is what God says about keeping first things first, that His ways are right even when we may not understand them, that the church is our team, God is our leader, and we can trust Him no matter what.
Mama Mia! That’s good. Good, good, good!