The Gift of Children at Worship

32454This past weekend I attended the 2019 Issues EtcMaking the Case” conference which featured a range of speakers making the case for a variety of topics including the Lord’s Supper, to Pro-Life advocacy, the natural family, and an old-fashioned hymn sing.

Something I noticed as each speaker made their presentation was the abundance of sounds from the younger people in attendance as they expressed themselves the way children have since time immemorable. There was excited exclamations, some crying, more than a few tears, some burbling from the infant attendees, and doubtless a filled diaper or two.

Many are the stories of parents embarrassed by their children’s behavior or being shamed by glares from other adults that think noisy kids have no place in a worship service.

What to do about such distractions? Many people are familiar of this Scripture on the topic:

Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people, but Jesus said, Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 19:13-14

I’d submit there’s another reason to encourage parents to bring their young people to church regardless of their children’s ability to sit still and keep quiet during the service.

It’s not just because doing so will expose the young people to the Word in all its grace and power.

It’s for the good of the “adults” in the room.

Why is that?

Because

what those children are to their parents

is a clear, present, and living reminder of

what we are to our God.

As scripture teaches:

As a father shows compassion to his children,
    so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
For he knows our frame;
    he remembers that we are dust.  
Psalm 103:13-14

The next time you hear a young member of the Body of Christ singing the song of all children during a reading or in the middle of the sermon, say a little prayer of thanks for the reminder that – despite everything you do to mess up His creation with your sinful conduct – He still loves you enough to care for you and even die for you.

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