The Importance of Leading Children to Jesus

The Lord has blessed me with the opportunity to help with the four, five and six year old Junior Church each Sunday morning. We sing songs, watch puppets with the "big kids," review our lesson and play games. As I watch Kelli teach them and my heart is so full.

I was just four years old when I accepted the Lord Jesus as my Savior. My Sunday school teacher brought up a little boy in our class that day, and told us that Davy had asked Jesus into his heart that week. Though many would argue that we were too young, she gave us the Gospel that day. I already knew that I was a sinner. I already knew that Jesus had died for sinners. I already knew that my parent's relationship with God could not get me to Heaven.

That day, the teacher asked us to all bow our heads and raise our hands if we wanted to accept Jesus as our Savior. I remember thinking, "I've never done that. I need to do that." I prayed along with her and accepted Jesus as my personal Savior.

Children must be carefully dealt with so that they are not pressured or led along without making their own decision to trust Christ. Yet it is not our place to judge whether a child "meant it" or not. We are merely to lead them to Christ.

We cannot neglect to give children the opportunity to receive Jesus as Savior because they are young and we are fearful of our own failings; or because we believe that they are too young to understand at all; or because we believe that they will have another chance when they are older; or because we want to labor in fields that reap visible results (baptism and public profession).

It may be years before we see the visible results of our labors. I did not have assurance of my salvation until a few years after I first prayed, and I was not baptized until I was in second grade. My teacher never knew which children had really prayed with her on that day, or which children had really understood and meant the prayer. She left that with God.

Many of the children in our Junior Church may be hearing the Gospel for the first time, and we will never know if it may be their last. We must be faithful to clearly present the Gospel and give them opportunity to accept salvation. The results are up to God.

And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, "Behold, a sower went forth to sow;
And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:
Some fell upon stony places where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up because they had no deepness of earth:
And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:
But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundred fold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.
Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.
~Matthew 13:3-9

~picture from Reusable Art

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