A Little Child Will Lead Them

Fri 6th March

Young people have often had a prophetic voice. Our Bible is full of daring young people who stood up when adults could or would not. Just think of David stepping up to fight a giant using his shepherding skills, Samuel hearing God speak and not being afraid to answer the call. Or there is Esther daring to go before the King when she wasn’t called for and in doing so preventing the slaughter of the Jews and Mary, saying yes to becoming the mother of God.  So it should not come as a surprise that when it comes to demanding action to tackle climate change, it is young people who are leading the way.

 

Placing the Child in the Centre

We see Jesus placing the child in the centre in the well known passage found in Matthew 19:14 where he says “Let the children come to me and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to such as these.”

 

The Kingdom of Heaven?

When we look at the Kingdom of Heaven we sometimes think of a place far away that we only get to once we die. But what about when we seek to find Heaven on earth? After all we regularly pray in the Lord’s Prayer “your will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven.” In Heaven God’s reign is whole and complete, what we want is to see that on Earth too. 

 

Sometimes we catch glimpses of Heaven in the “thin” holy places where God feels particularly close, in the power of the ocean, the majesty of the mountain tops or the vastness of a night’s sky. All of creation sings of God’s glory yet Earth is not Heaven.  

 

So long as we aren’t doing what we can to save our planet, God’s reign on Earth remains incomplete and we are failing the children for whom Heaven, and the future of Earth belongs.

All we need to do is listen and follow

It is the children leading the way who are bringing about Heaven on Earth, making our planet better and saving us from ourselves. We all have things to do to bring Heaven to Earth and by slowing down and listening to what is often a prophetic whisper in a loud and noisy world we can let children lead us to save our planet and realise Heaven on Earth now. 

 

Each Incredible Child

Today we hear stories of incredible children who are speaking out and making a difference. Greta Thunberg has become a household name and is invited to speak to gatherings of world leaders. Ongoing Climate strikes see large numbers of children walking out of their schools to publically demand change. These are major things calling for adults to pay attention and make structural changes. But it also the small voices of the children all around us. I know the children in my church care more about the planet than many other issues. They care about plastic, recycling, the oceans and personally do what they can to make the differences that are needed. 

 

 

So it is vital that we listen to, and follow the example, of children “”because the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to such as these.”

 

 

How can you ensure you are listening to the prophetic voice of the young people in your  church, your life and your wider community?

 

 

Rach Collins is a Local Preacher in the Ashton-under-Lyne Circuit.

Slow Down, Save the Planet is being funded by the Manchester and Stockport Methodist District

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