For a brief period of time I was a family minister at a local church and had the responsibility of choosing a new children’s curriculum. This was a challenge since a majority of my time was spent in youth ministry looking to the needs of adolescents and their learning needs. What did I know about kids and what they needed to learn about God?
This might be why my foray into family ministry was so short……
I have taken classes on child development, but not really anything in the educational realm. My initial impression (though totally wrong) about children’s Sunday school was they sang songs and did some kind of art project until their parents came to pick them up. Yet, as I researched various curriculums, I found there was a method to the madness.
One curriculum in particular really summed up what they felt children really need to know about God:
God made me.
God loves me.
Jesus wants to be my friend forever.
How beautiful is that? Could it be more simple?
In fact, if my child knew nothing else about God than that, I think it would be okay.
Why is that?
Because most of the people I know who say they don’t believe in God typically have more of an issue about who God is rather than if he exists. This might be an over-generalization, but typically the resistance around the idea of God revolves around our ideas about God.
This is the reason we talk a lot about theology on this blog. The way we think and talk about God is really important. It informs how we act and behave, how we communicate with God, and how we think things will work out in the end.
This is why we have conversations about God as a Father, lover, and friend. His is all of these things and more.
So often when we have a “faith crisis” it isn’t really about whether or not God exists, but more about whether God is good. Does God love me when everything turns to crap? Will Jesus still walk with me even when I am a jerk? How far is too far for God to stop loving me?
As for me, I believe God is good. He is a faithful God who won’t leave his children. He is a great father who isn’t afraid to discipline for the betterment of his kids. I believe God has a lot more love for us than we could ever imagine. I also believe it pains our creator when we do things to destroy ourselves.
I guess my encouragement to the reader is this – if you are struggling with your faith in God, try to look at it as a struggle with who God is. And, if nothing else – understand that you are the child who is loved completely by your creator.
Because….God made you, God loves you, and is your friend forever.