Tell Me the Stories of Jesus

Every week on Wednesday and Thursday morning at 9:30 we have chapel for our PUMP kids.  Ask any kid who has been in PUMP over the past four years to sing Deep and Wide-- but hold on to something first! Chapel is always fun for me because every week I see a dozen or more kids I baptized over the years and I reflect on how much they have grown!  After singing a few "chapel songs" I read them a Bible story.  Yesterday I held up the picture Bible which showed a man sitting in a tree.  "What is his name?" I asked, wondering if anyone knew.  "ZACCHAEUS!" someone shouted from the back row (Ms. Bev's class).  It was Carter Wilburn (The Wilburns joined PUMC last year).  I was so excited I immediately sent his parents messages on Facebook, saying he deserved a gold star.

I am always proud to see and hear PUMC kids learning the stories of Jesus and growing in their faith.  Recently Rebecca Hunter, who teaches our 1st and 2nd grade Sunday school class, posted some pictures her kids created of Jesus' miracles.  Last Sunday they wrote out the stories that go with their picture.  I moved them from their original place to the bulletin board outside my office.  Check them out Sunday!  As Rebecca said, "We have some bright children in our church."  Absolutely!  Aren't you proud of that?

I have always celebrated the outstanding children's ministries at PUMC, from PUMP to Children's choir to nursery to Wednesday nights to VBS to Sunday school to KidZone.  It's especially gratifying for me not just professionally as a pastor but also personally as a dad.  Last Monday night Hila Cartwright and Michelle Chumley, co-directors of VBS held their first info meeting and nearly 20 people showed up, many of whom were new to the church.  We have dedicated adults who love Jesus and children and serve in a variety of ways.  We are thankful for all of you!

Sometimes ministry can be frustrating because we often do not see the fruits of our labor.  But every now and then a kids shouts from the back pew, a child draws a picture and tells a story, attends Camp Bridgeport, has a great week at VBS, or randomly sings a song or remembers a Bible verse.  Those little moments make everything worthwhile!

In Jesus' day not much value was placed on children outside of the home.  But Jesus regarded children with a high priority: "Let them come to me; do not hinder them" (Matthew 19:14).  I am proud and thankful to be a part of a community of faith that celebrates and loves children and never hinders their growth. This Sunday do not hinder your children-- bring them to church to learn the stories of Jesus.  I look forward to seeing your family here!