St. Peter Lutheran Church at Walburg, Texas 2018 - All Rights Reserved
"But Jesus said, 'Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.'"
Matthew 19:14 ESV
Our culture is obsessed with "youth." Turning on the television one can see shows designed to highlight youth. Marketers often speak of "reaching out to the next generation." Such talk has caused many people to resent the youth and create a backlash against the youth. The irony is that in our frenzy to reach the youth, so many in our culture alienate the youth. Then these same people become offended because the youth inferred that we weren't really interested in them in the first place, but merely wanted to be seen as youthful. If your head is spinning, you aren't alone.
Many of the smartest people in advertising speak of how reaching out to youth culture is like the old Mad Magazine comic of "Spy v. Spy." Each time one side (say the advertiser) has a clever ploy over the other spy (i.e. the Millennial), the plans come to naught. The young people are tired of being a demographic to be wooed. So we must ask, what are the youth?
We see here that Jesus asks that everyone come to him, no matter their age. Jesus sees that the parents find in Him a person where life can be found abundantly. The disciples however, nervous about their reputation, do not wish for the "Kingdom of God" to appear "cheap" to those around them. They want for Jesus to be respected as an adult thinker and teacher. They believe this statement is for mature minds and wise souls.
Jesus' rebuke still rings through our age. While we claim to be mature and "grown up" we are still filled with the childishness of wishing to appear as "insiders." Recently, many from our church had the privilege of witnessing to the little children of the Walburg, Texas community. It was easy and tempting to look to movers and shakers around us or the "very important people" in our community; but instead this church saw the needs of our community and recognized the gifts that had been given to our church. In this way we listened when our Teacher told us, "Don't stop the young people from finding what they are really seeking, you are my kingdom and you belong to them."