Matthew 19:14— Jesus said, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.”
How we treat our kids is a look into our souls. Dame Whina Cooper also said “take care of our children; take care of what they hear; take care of what they see; take care of what they feel; for how the children grow so will be the shape of Aotearoa”. Jesus’ words say something really important, make room—give our children the space to come to Him, and to value them for who they are.
These kids were being brought to Jesus so that he could bless them and pray for them. They were open to Jesus and his blessing. But the disciples were a big road block. They did not value these kids and thought they were interfering and crowding out their own personal space. Jesus says that instead we need to be like the kids, seeking his presence, waiting for his blessing, and allowing him to pray over us—for the kingdom belongs to these sort of people.
It is a tragedy to see how we have so often treated kids and others who are vulnerable as a society. These are not kingdom values. We would love to be able to say that at The Anchor we value our kids and that we value the kids in our community. We would like to say that we allow them to be brought to Jesus and for Jesus to bless them and pray over them. We would hope that we do not block them out and shut them away. It can be untidy, raucous, and gritty—but that is the stuff of life.
That is where Anchor Kids; Holiday Programmes, Mainly Music, Generation all come into it. Making time and space for our kids, and our kids in the widest sense—any kid in our community has a place here—with Jesus.