Okay, so here’s something that is good! Some of you know that I work with an 8th grade class at my church, teaching them & questioning them about what they believe about Christianity & the theology in their hearts. Basically, here’s what our church believes, and why….and then asking them to look into the Bible & to discover for themselves what they believe. So two Wednesdays ago, my friend Ellen & I took this group to a memory loss home. We paired off each of the kids with a resident to do a “thanksgiving” craft. For each pair, we had a sketch of a bare tree…then we had the kids ask the residents what they were thankful for & write it on printed colored leaves & paste them on the tree. It was so cool. Afterwards, we took the kids to culvers to talk about the experience. It was interesting to have them open up about how they were intimidated right away & nervous because they didn’t know what to expect. They noted how many of the residents kept repeating questions “like 50 times!” The kids thought it was neat to meet people who others sometimes think is less important or worthy. And they were excited at the possibility to go back again! Then last week, due to outside circumstances, we only had 1/2 hour to brief the kids on the lesson for next week on how we are created in God’s image. I took 8 of them out for pizza and discussion…we talked about which was more important between a puppy, baby, horse or old person. They almost all chose the baby, but then I gave them other questions like…if you were a pregnant teen & your fiance wasn’t the dad of the baby & your parents might disown you, would you have an abortion? Then I asked what if you had twins, one was disabled & the other born somewhat “normal” and you could only keep one alive….which would you choose? And then again, if there was an old person who couldn’t remember anything, and didn’t know any family anymore, would it be so bad if someone helped them to die? The whole point in asking these questions was to get the kids to wonder what it is about us as humans, that makes us special. Is it who we are physically? Mentally? Socially? or is it more than that? If we’re created in the image of God, what does that mean? Why does that make us special & worth something? And if we’re ALL created in the image of God, is it fair or right to judge one person worth more than another? We got into a good discussion, and I think they really “got it” that the Bible is clear about our value in life. At the end of the night, I had each of the kids write their name on the top of a red note card. Then they passed them around the table, and everyone wrote one thing that they thought was unique and special about that person. Then we read Psalm 139. (which when i told them psalm 139, they all wrote psalm 1:39…..thought that was funny!) “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to [b] me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.”
What comfort, to know that God knows us inside & out, upside & down, good & bad, our worth & our sinfulness. He knows us & yet loves us. He chose us. He chose to die for us, to bring Glory to Himself. He alone is worth more than anything we can think of…He is.