Thursday, June 7, 2012

Missionary Games

I overheard my girls playing today with the Legos and cars that are always piled on our "train" table. I was reading some things at my desk, so it only gradually dawned on me what they were playing. They were pretending to be missionaries (or pretending that their cars were missionaries, I'm not sure). My oldest was saying something about "but no one here is a Christian" while my youngest was trying to tell everyone (or every car and Lego man) about Jesus.

It made me smile, that's for sure! Whether it's due to the GAs and Mission Friends classes at church, or the missionary biography stories we've been reading for school (mostly from Hero Tales), or a combination of everything, missionary work is on their minds. I had just been telling my oldest, at her bedtime last night, about an article I had recently read. It told of a missionary to a small village in a remote area, where not only was no one a Christian, but they were overtly hostile toward Christians. But thanks to months of prayer, and God's miraculous healing power, a church was born there, with 35 or more new Christians. They began to make a huge difference in the village, where drunkenness and spirit (demon) worship had been common.

I have really ended up liking the stories in Hero Tales, which was suggested by Sonlight, in an older version of Core A. They are amazing stories, and make me quite emotional sometimes, which makes them hard to finish reading aloud. I wasn't sure how much my oldest was getting out of them, but I guess she really is listening.

I like the title of the book too - Hero Tales. Missionaries really are the type of heroes I want my children to admire, and perhaps emulate. How hard it is in our culture to imagine giving up the little luxuries that we take for granted (or even big ones, like running water), to live in another culture, with little income, with no thought for career advancement (at least here on Earth). How rare it is for someone to aim for such a life, instead of a career as a lawyer, engineer, computer specialist, scientist, doctor, athlete, etc., with the accompanying big house, 2+ cars, etc. (And how many parents truly want that for their child? Do I, really, when I really think about it? I'm reminded of the verse where Jesus said it was harder for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.) How hard it is to go through with such a life, instead of just thinking that being a missionary would be "neat." Perhaps the drive to become a missionary starts now, in childhood, and with continued exposure to the real-life miracles that those who are fully committed to Christ may see every day. Perhaps such an emphasis might even change the parent....

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