"Therefore as you go, make disciples of all nations... baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
This Sunday, we recognized a young man in second grade, following our tradition of giving him his very own Bible to read with his family and here at church. What I loved was how he came running down the aisle to receive it, and then went running back down the aisle to show it to his parents.
As with much of what children do in wonder, awe, enthusiasm, and delight, we can notice things we have forgotten about ourselves as we settle into adulthood. How many of us come running to God on Sunday morning, or any morning? While many of us do rush out the door to get to church, how often is it to spend time with God and to hear from God's word for us? And once we have received God's Word, how many of us are running out to share it?
I'm grateful for this young man and his enthusiasm. It is always our hope as believers, and mine as a pastor and teacher, to inspire our young people, to impart faith, and the love, hope, peace, and joy that come with it. But, I think Christ tells us over and over again that it's the children who we must look to as adults to be inspired to pursue our callings, not just diligently as disciples, but enthusiastically as children of God.
The scripture above is wonderful in the Greek, and challenging. The command is not "to go." The command is to make disciples. The verb form of the motion at the start indicates Christ is saying, "AS YOU GO." Jesus already told the disciples there is need in the world and that his teachings already demand we run to that world to help. His command is to serve. When we are called to worship this Sunday, I hope you'll remember this young boy, and as you read the words, I hope you'll say them as one who has come running to God, and is ready to run to the world.
Prayer for Today
Oh Lord, we know that you wait for us, that you long for us to come in prayer and worship and the reading of your holy word. We pray that we come to it with the enthusiasm of a child, and that your Spirit would fill us with your love and wisdom, eager to be driven out to the world, to go running to those in need. In your son's name, amen.