#90 Upside Down
These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also... saying that there is another king, one Jesus.† - Acts 17:6,7
Text: Mark 9:33-37; 10:13-16
Props: a book and reading glasses
Summary: Jesus loves little children. To be great in God's eyes we must be ready to trust and obey him as a little child.
Today I want to tell you a story about Jesus and little children. [Hold a book in front of you, intentionally turned upside down.] Hmmm. This is odd. Let me try my reading glasses. [Try to put on reading glasses upside down.] Hmmm. This still isn't right. What's wrong? [You have things upside down] Occasionally we have the wrong idea about the way things should be. Jesus turns our way of thinking upside down so we can understand the way God sees things.
The disciples (followers of Jesus) had an argument one day. They were ashamed to admit it but they argued about which one of them would be the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Would it be the one who memorized the most verses in the Bible? Would it be the one that preached the best? Would it be the best leader? Would it be the one with the biggest church building? They thought being great was having the best talent or ability. Jesus called a child over to them. He explained that whoever wanted to be great had to be humble like a child. We must be ready to trust and obey as a little child and be willing to serve others.
[Read Mark 9:35] In our world people want to be first. Jesus turns our way of thinking upside down. Jesus says serve others. Let them go first and be willing to be last in line. Jesus taught that the last shall be first. What matters to God is not so much our ability but our willingness to serve others.††
The disciples had the wrong idea about little children and babies also. One day some parents were bringing infants and toddlers to Jesus. The disciples knew Jesus was tired. They thought he was much too important to take time for little children. So they told the parents to go away and leave Jesus alone.††
[Read Mark 10:14-15] Jesus told the disciples to let the children come to him. Jesus loves children. Jesus loves you! Jesus said the kingdom of heaven is made up of people who are ready to trust and obey him with a simple faith, like a child. The disciples didn't think children were important but Jesus turned their idea upside down. He very gently took the babies in his arms and blessed them. You are important to Jesus and he loves you very much!
©2000 by Jim Kerlin. All rights reserved.
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