Posts Tagged: "Children"

I Go To A Church That Gives Away Bicycles

I go to a church that gives away bicycles. Here’s a little background on that—a few lines from our recent Vision Day message at NWLife…


The cross means life FOR THE PEOPLE

And God wants his church to always be FOR THE PEOPLE

Look, we have too much work waiting to be done—we don’t have time to waste being all political or afraid or selfish. What I’m talking about here is doing stuff: Real stuff. Hands dirty, hearts breaking, brows sweating… behaving like we give a damn—because we follow Jesus who was, is, and will always be FOR THE PEOPLE.

This thing called church is not for profits, it’s not for power, it’s not for popularity…

What’s it about then?

It’s about… Read More

Lent Day 9… Acquiring This Sensibility That Divides Us

All cultures identify with children in a similar way. 10-year-old boys from different cultures have more in common than 30-year-olds. As we grow up, we acquire this sensibility that divides us. —Rowan Atkinson

As we grow up, we acquire this sensibility that divides us. 

There is an irony to that statement. Perhaps it is ironic because in dividing ourselves from one another, we must… Read More

Do You Know What God Dreams About?

*this post comes from Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s children’s book God’s Dream


Dear child of God, what do you dream about in your loveliest of dreams? Do you dream about flying high or rainbows reaching across the sky?

Do you dream about being free to do what your heart desires? Or about being treated like a full person no matter how young you might be?

Do you know what God dreams about? If you close your eyes and look with your heart, I am sure, dear child, that you will find out.

God dreams about… Read More

Low & Slow Enough To Listen

If men do not keep on speaking terms with children, they cease to be men, and become merely machines for eating and for earning money. —John Updike

I wonder if we are “maturing” to a place where most of what we do is a never ending cycle of producing and consuming, consuming and producing. Or as Updike put it, machines for eating and for earning money.

Tina Francis spoke of this recently—when she talked about being still and knowing He is God. She said, “It’s when I’m no longer producing or consuming that I am most able to experience God’s love.”

We often think in terms of how the poor need us, or how children need us – for help, instruction, advice, etc.

But truthfully, we need the poor, and we need the child. They instruct us in the way of the Kingdom.

They remind us to play, to listen, to enjoy small and simple things.

They remind us to celebrate, to sing, to imagine.

They remind us to make use of cardboard boxes and sticks and to not be afraid of the dirt.

If we do not keep on speaking terms with the poor, with the child, we lose… Read More

Ow Foddo en evan (Teaching The Lord’s Prayer To My Children)

It’s Sunday and I have a shout out…

This post by Ryan Flanagan is honestly my favorite thing I’ve ever read on the Lord’s prayer. Hope you’ll read the whole thing.

*     *     *

Over the past couple of months I have been teaching my kids the Lord’s Prayer. It’s amazing how fast they pick these kinds of things up. They’ve already got “The Doxology” down, as well as the first verse to “Be Thou My Vision” (the most requested bedtime song these days) and “Bless Us, O Lord” (the mealtime prayer). And even though they have no idea what some of the words mean, I do believe their hearts are being shaped by the practice.

I know mine certainly is.

I have to admit that up to this point praying the Lord’s Prayer has not been a regular practice in my life. I have given mental assent to it, studied its contents, and recited it in corporate worship on occasion, but it has never blossomed in my heart like it has recently, especially this past week.

I would venture to say that the Lord’s Prayer for most of us is an abstract, in-the-clouds sort of prayer. Many of the words that make up the prayer–like heaven, kingdom, sin, and forgive–have been so churchified that they’ve lost any and all sensibleness and relatedness to our everyday lives. This cannot be what Jesus had in mind when teaching his disciples how to pray. To those first followers of Jesus this prayer was as down-to-earth as was his physical presence; these words were as basic as the language of two and four-year-olds.

This is what the Lord has taught me in teaching his prayer to my children.

Ow Foddo en evan, ho-yee is… Read More

Thinking About What We Praise Our Kids The Most For

The picture above shows London Hagebusch carrying a heavy bag of groceries. Just behind her is Haven Wheeler. And a number of other children were there too…

They were helping at our Thanksgiving Grocery Give Stuffing Party – it’s the event the day before the event. We ask people to come set everything up for the big day. The Stuffing Party was noticeably, beautifully diverse – people of all ages and races and socio-economic backgrounds serving together. Perhaps most striking, though, was the image of young children throwing themselves into the task. I mean, they were actually sweating. And they were having a blast.

I’m not sure if we made a big enough of a deal about it.

I think it probably got mentioned a few times – like in church during our “main” services. But I wonder if we made a big enough of a deal about it with the kids.

Please take a minute to watch this… Read More