Saturday, April 2, 2011

Kids truths for a grown up heart.

So, i work with kids at my church. And to say i love it is hardly sufficient. It's a little strange to think about how much i really do enjoy it, so let me explain.

A few years ago, i would have hung out with kiddos for a few reason, none of them out of pure love for kids. Most people just expected me to, 1. Because i wanted to be a teacher (the good Lord spared me from that as a job early in my major decisions). and 2. i was a girl. A natural combination for folks to work with kids, right? "She'll be a mom eventually... she should probably work with kids." And while i did it, and i think did it alright, i never really LOVED it.

So i plugged into ministry for young women, mostly jr. high and college aged women and that, i loved! I loved walking with ladies with whom i was a few steps ahead and with those who were in similar seasons. It was rich- and yea, i loved it!

So, fast forward a few years, and i move to Korea. Awesome. My days are filled with stupid cute kids who work hard to understand English and can stare me down with the cutest, most confused eyes i've ever seen. So while my ESL lessons proved less than awesome at times... i succeeded in the universal art of love and laughter (and in that taught them some English that really mattered! And only a few bad words, they were in top demand.) And, you know what, they won me over. Kids like when you make a fool of yourself. When you struggle to draw (and they likewise struggle to decipher) a figure on the board you drew intending to clarify the spoken concept you couldn't communicate verbally. Yea... they like adults who love them and want the best for them. High fives and funny voices, cookies and kimbap, love and laughter translate well.

All that to say, i grew rather fond of kids this past year. Not in a pet your head, your so stinkin' cute i wanna eat your face, kind of way... but rather in a you're pretty awesome, you need some love and i'm gonna talk to you like an adult kind of way. And we're both gonna laugh like kids when you so something awesomely appropriate because you're "a kid!" and because i'm an adult who has no authority or desire to punish you. shhh.... : )

Now im stationed in California and i find myself rockin' kid's ministries. I was a little hesitant at first, but it's awesome. Aside from getting to hang out with kids and talk to them about their "mastery of animals trivia" or "cool new dance moves", I have a new found settledness that the Gospel is sufficient. It doesn't need to be watered down. They get it! They ask the good questions. And will truthfully answer the hard ones. I'm learning that the grace of God and the simplicity of his Gospel is simple... and kids get it in the most pure kind of ways. They don't need frills, they've got life to keep on living.

So i'm reading through this weeks lesson on humility, that being treating others as if they were better than you, and i get a kick in the pants. ("Not I, the adult." Spoken with one hand pointed chest-ward as if i were British) The message is simple. But dang, SO needed. What would look differently if i actually put to practice humility in my own life? Let's get real straight for a minute-- i'm far from humble. And well, i wear pride like stunner shades at night-- to my shame.

A humble, simple life values others greater and esteems Jesus higher. Jesus-- the Creator of the FREAKIN' UNIVERSE, the Redeemer of the world, the BEGINNING and the END, the one who rendered heaven to save my sorry self. Yea, that one. He humbled himself to death on a cross. And before that, he washed people's grimy feet-- even those who would betray him. He gave and loved. He served and then he offered himself to die. He got spit on and his friend's fell asleep on him. True humility.

A schoush (a made up word i use for "a little") of that, an ounce of that, in my own life would clear up the image i bear of Jesus-- the one the i love-- to the folks watching me. And dang, He would shine magnitudes brighter!! And that is what i want! I want people to see Jesus and to love him-- i just have a hard time getting over myself.

A lesson for a kid and a much needed shake for a grown up. Repentance, likewise, is also simple- stand up. Turn around. Walk. So here i go... figuratively. There's a mirror behind me. While probably humbling for my face, bad for the mirror.

: ) Jesus is good... i'm thankful!


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