Romans 12 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
These verses are the basis for the Sunday School lesson that went with the Children’s Message for Easter Sunday, and let’s face it, these are NOT easy concepts. In many ways they run in complete opposition to both our most basic instincts, to the way the world works and the way it encourages us to be. These are particularly hard for kids, hard, but not impossible.
We have talked a fair bit about the idea of Shalom in Sunday School, about God’s peace, and these verses are like the instruction manual. Below you will find a link to an adaptation of a story called Starfish on the Beach, by Tom and Lindy Schneider. I think the underlying message is truly the key to both living into the Scripture passages above, teaching the concepts to our kids and achieving a little of Shalom right here in Gaithersburg:
Don’t get blown off track by what you can’t achieve. Do one little bit of good right here, right now. Change what you can change today; help where you can help; love who you can love and then let these grow organically. Jesus changed the world, and for the most part, he did it one person at a time. We may never change the world, but we can change the life of one starfish at a time.
The Boy and the Starfish, https://youtu.be/PkV0jvmBLOc
Do simple things, with love.
Director of Children and Young Families
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