Children Matter

Children Matter

Children Matter

Has a crying baby ever disturbed you during a church service? Did you ever see children running around during worship, wishing their parents would control them? How did you feel about children and infants creating a fuss during prayer?

Amazingly, this happened in the Temple in Jerusalem two days before Jesus was crucified. The chief priests (like bishops) and teachers of the law (like pastors) saw the remarkable healings Jesus performed, and the children started shouting in the temple area. “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they called. The religious leaders were indignant! For those priests, Children didn’t matter.

But to Jesus, things were different. He wanted children to be themselves, especially if they were worshiping God. He had just healed the blind and the lame, and everyone was excited and thrilled at the power of God. “Yes, I hear what the children are saying,” Jesus responded. “Have you never read, ‘From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise.” (Matthew 21:14-16). Children Matter in times of praise.

Scripture has so much to say about children! The verse Jesus quoted comes from Psalm 8:2. The Lord’s majesty over the whole earth is being lauded. In the Ten Commandments, children occupy the central instruction point. Commandment number 5 reads, “Honor your father and mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.” (Exodus 20:12). Children Matter, for they help to create a prosperous, just, and stable society.

Unlike North America, Latin America is full of children! In Bolivia, an astonishing 40% of the population is under the age of 15. What is the percentage in the other countries where LAM has missionaries? In Guatemala, the figure is 33%. The number in Honduras is 31%; in Ecuador, 26%; in Venezuela, 24%; in Colombia, 23%; in Mexico, 22%; and in Costa Rica, Chile, and Brazil, 20%. China and Russia are about 17%. In Canada, the figure falls; 15% of our population is 15 or younger. This means there are almost three times as many children per 100 people in Bolivia. Japan has practically the lowest ratio in the world at 12%. Globally, that figure is about 25%. (Source: Wikipedia – Individual countries) Children Matter in every sphere, in families, schools, and society.

Children Matter to the Lord. Each child is loved by a Heavenly Father. Jesus Christ died for each one. Each child has an angel appointed for care and protection. Children are lovable and vulnerable. Children take time and demand endless patience. Their moods can change instantly from showing affection to saying hateful things. The Scripture says, “Children are a heritage from the Lord; children are a reward from him.” (Psalm 127:3) 

As we approach Christmas 2023, all of us at LAM thank the Lord for children, grandchildren, adopted children, foster children, school children, problem children, super-achieving children, healthy and unhealthy children, sad and happy children, and any other child that comes under our care. We commit ourselves to making an even more significant impact in family’s lives in the coming year. Yes, Children Matter! 

   By David Phillips