We sang this little hymn to open worship yesterday. Such a simple declaration of God’s presence. Such a simple affirmation of what is good in life. Such an important foundation of faith.
We have been reading Hebrew stories over the summer, and as we read the stories of Ruth and Esther, especially, we saw that God was never specifically mentioned in them. These stories are of regular people who are living out of the basic foundation of their lives. It may seem that in the stories God is absent, but that is not the case. God is always present and active, whether the characters talk about God or not.
Each year at this time, I think about how we are shaping our children so that they have God always in the background of their thoughts and actions, or if they are left to think they are just on their own. Are we giving them the tools of both Sunday School and worship so that they know there are people who genuinely care about them in addition to their parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc.?
School is a very important part of each child’s life. It can be deeply satisfying, a place that stimulates creative thinking and curiosity. And it can be a place that is terrifying, especially as each child learns that not everyone will like them – not an easy thing to learn but a necessary thing to learn.
Each year we give the children and school staff something to put on their backpacks as a reminder that they have a whole faith family pulling for them. This year it will be a keychain with a lighthouse. During the Children’s Moment that day, I will talk about the lighthouse as something to help them remember, just by looking at it, that God is here, loving them, everyday.
Won’t you remind them? Perhaps you can touch the key chain each morning as they leave for school and say something to remind them – even as simple as “Remember, you’re not alone!” or even just “remember.”
Building a strong foundation is an every day task for parents and others who love children.
Blessings on you!