How Can We Honor Children?
// Jeanne DeTellis Loudon
Recently, I read an article which stated that children become more emotionally intelligent if they have a close relationship with their grandparents.
How many grandparents are on a mission to care for their grandchildren? I am grateful for my parent’s mission to my four children.
My husband Ted has one grandchild, Jack, who is three years old. Ted enjoys frequent trips to Chicago to spend time with Jack. Ted and I were babysitting Jack last month, and he was trying to fix one of Jack’s toys. After he tried and tried, he turned to Jack and said, “Poppa can’t fix this toy. How did it get broken?” Jack fixed his eyes on his Poppa and mused, “The other Jack broke it.”
Jack is only three years old, but he has heard about Jesus from the moment he was born. Jack’s heart has accepted Jesus and he does not want to be the other Jack. He wants to be the good Jack. There is a promise from God that says, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” (Prov. 22:6).
What about stories of the pain of other children living in poverty, abuse or illness? Can they, too, grow in the ways of the Lord? Yes! Children easily come to Jesus and understand His love—developing a healing relationship with God. I know a child in Haiti who was given into slavery, but came to Christ and now excels in political leadership.
Another child I know in Haiti was disowned by her family because she prayed to accept Jesus. But she trusted the Lord and achieved academic excellence, and now is a wife and mother of high esteem. Jesus is the right to every wrong in life.
One more child I recall was born in the Dominican Republic, and sadly her mother died giving birth. Her father was an alcoholic, and she quickly had to grow up—learning to take money from her father’s pockets when he was asleep so she could buy some food. She found Jesus, sang in church, and became a leader among her peers. Even for a child whose life is painful, the unlimited grace and love of God can change it all.
This month, a woman had dinner at our home who was abused as a child. She speaks no pain; she is healed by the love of Jesus, and is currently on her way to Papua New Guinea serving as a missionary.
We need to read and understand what Jesus said when He told us that when we see a child, we are seeing Him (Matt. 25:40). We must stand up for these precious children and fight violence, abuse, and hunger. God, give us the hearts to meet the needs of children.
Thank God, our mission schools begin their day with prayer and Bible stories—providing them with love and security.
Can you remember kindness shown to you as a child? Praise God! Can you remember harm to you as a child? Bring this pain to Jesus. He can heal the scars of pain. Jesus loves children. Will you, too, love and honor children? ~Jeanne DeTellis Loudon