Monday, April 30, 2012

Reason to Celebrate

I love the way God works. At our church, I work with the Awana boys in the 3rd through 6th grade. This year, we’ve been down in attendance because we quit running the van. We decided to try focusing on those who wanted to come rather than including those who just wanted to ride the van to get away from home. We’ve had nights this year when we’ve had more male leaders than we’ve had male clubbers. I’ll admit, I’ve been down about the turnout.

Well, last week was our spring revival services. Each year, on Wednesday, we combine Awana with the revival. This time, we did handbook time as usual and then took the kids down to sit in the auditorium. Dr. Philip Attebery, dean of the BMA Theological Seminary brought the message. As I listened to the message, I was thrilled. It was the kind of sermon I like to hear. It headed off into some somewhat deep concepts and he got into the means of some of the Greek words. He talked about how the individual is not the most important thing in a church. And he preached longer than I expected. That was fine for me because I was enjoying it, but some of the kids were squirming because we’d promised they could play kickball afterward. As good of a message as he brought, it seemed like he did everything wrong that he could have in presenting a message to my group of kids. For everyone else, it was great, but for my group of kids, not so much.

During the invitation, I thought I heard one of the boys whisper to another leader, “Am I saved?” I didn’t hear the other leader’s response, but I was confident he would respond appropriately, probably even better than I would, so I went on singing.

We baptized that kid yesterday. It just goes to show that God can take a sermon that I might think was better suited for adults and use it to convict a young child of his sins. I’m not recommending that you start pronouncing Greek words as a way to win children to the Lord and I’m sure that if Dr. Attebery had been speaking only to a group of elementary kids he would have had something different to say. What I am saying is that while I was taking in the Greek words and the deeper theological concepts, the Holy Spirit was causing a young boy to listen to what Dr. Attebery was saying about how he came to recognize his need for salvation. Isn’t God great?