Our Orange Curriculum is pretty great. The philosophy behind it is that the Church and Family work together to make a greater impact on the kids lives. Our hope and goal for all the kids in Kids Connection is that they will come to have an authentic relationship with Jesus and as they grow up will continue to be active members of the Church.
I wanted to start doing a monthly devotional type blog called From Kids to Adults. The premise behind this is that we will take one of the monthly themes we are learning in Kids Connection and write a devotional for it. This way you can chat with your kids about our topics and even share with them how you have processed and learned about these themes. For October I will be using our grades 1-5 theme which is on Contentment.
Contentment is in my opinion quite challenging. There is a constant pressure from this world to want more. We want more in our relationships, in our possessions, in our finances, and in our social lives, yet the more we attain, the more it doesn’t become enough. If we aren’t careful, we will be falling down that slippery slope of discontentment which can become all-consuming in our lives. Anything that draws our attention away from God is dangerous.
Matthew 6:25-26 says “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?” This passage is great because it teaches us a lot about contentment and discontentment.
When we think of things we are discontent with quite often the basic needs of life are not on that list. It is more like the newest things in technology, a new car or something like that. However, Jesus encourages us to not even worry about the basic needs because we don’t need to. There was this underlying issue amongst the people Jesus was talking to, and it was that they were allowing their discontentment or worry for things in their lives were becoming idols. They were all consuming their time and minds with needs God would meet. Jesus reminds these people of the birds, pointing us back to creation itself. God created everything in this world, and He did it intentionally. Those birds don’t have the habits humans do. When was the last time you saw a bird open a savings account or even go grocery shopping? It just doesn’t happen. If a bird wants food, it goes out and finds food to meet its needs at the moment. If a bird’s nest needs more, a bird goes out and sees what it needs. They don’t grab extra just in case. God provides for His creation.
Verse 26 brings up a very valid point. It says, “and aren’t you far more valuable to Him than they are?”. It is straightforward to forget how much God values us. It is important to remember that God appreciates us deeply. Remember God created us in His image. God created us to have a relationship with Him. He wouldn’t have sent Jesus to earth. Jesus purpose in coming to earth was to live a perfect life and be wrongly executed on the cross so He could bear our sins. Jesus did that so that we could have a relationship with Him again. Sin was always getting in the way. With God being so perfect and us being imperfect it was impossible for us to have a relationship with God truly. In God’s perfection, He would have to act justly towards us. Instead, He extended grace and sent the only person who could save us which was a part of Himself. God values us so profoundly that He killed a part of Himself to defeat Sin. He never did that for a bird. God knows our needs, and He meets them.
That desire for more still nags at us. It is dangerous for us to give into that more desire because if we aren’t careful, we can be communicating to God that what He has given us is not enough. That is a pretty huge statement considering what He has given us we could never pay back to God. Good thing He doesn’t ask that of us. Jesus also teaches us that there is something that we can desire more of if we keep reading in Matthew 6. Verse 33 says “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well”. Jesus prompts us to focus our time of God and His righteousness instead of concentrating on discontent. We can always desire more in our relationship with God. We can still dig deeper in our relationship with Him. The hard thing is wanting more can be quite addicting, and if that desire for more isn’t focused on God it can rob us of the here and now. If you are always focused on what’s next, you will never appreciate what you have now. It will become a barrier between you and God and deep down you don’t want that. God fulfills us but chasing more leaves us empty.
Full disclosure this an area I am still learning and growing in. Often, I am bad at being content, and in those moments, God reminds me that He is enough for me. I am so grateful that our kids here at VG are learning about this now and not waiting until they are older. It will only benefit their lives all the more. Let’s work together to be more content with where we are and what we have. God is enough for all of us if we focus on His Kingdom and His Righteousness we will find contentment in life. That is my hope and prayer for us as the church body that we will be content with God being enough.
What a great idea Devon, thanks for the initiative!!