Series: Family Privilege
Preacher: Jenniffer Ogden
Reflection: Jenniffer Ogden
Live Wonder: Jessyka Albert
Live Adventure: Jessyka Albert
Live Purpose: Don Pate
Editor: Becky De Oliveira
Refresh: Begin with prayer. Ask for the Holy Spirit to open your heart to new understanding and for God’s character to be revealed.
Read: Romans 10:1-21 in the English Standard Version (ESV). Note 1–3 insights or questions.
Reflect: A group of friends and I were gathered in a cabin in the woods for a long weekend. The kids had been tucked into bed, allowing the adults board game time. Somehow we had unearthed a mountain of games and were trying to play all of them during our time together. As we plotted and planned, laughed and lamented, the evening passed quickly. And suddenly over the din of voices we heard a tiny voice calling “Mama!”
One mother popped out of her seat and raced to her child. Soon a sleepy toddler was snuggled up to mom, tiredly sipping water, having her tears dried. It was the call of a tiny child that received needed attention and help.
It has taken me perhaps too long to realize that when I call, the God of heaven and earth races to help. God races to make sure I can snuggle up and be heard. He knows my every need. And He has all that I need.
When Paul speaks to calling on the name of the Lord, he knows we call out to One who acknowledges the truest and deepest needs of our lives. It is the need for rescue, for salvation from sin. We cry out asking an all-powerful God to save us from situations we cannot dig ourselves out from under. We plead to God, who willingly and eagerly responds.
Rescue comes from a God who keeps every promise. So often, our families and trusted friends fail to fulfill their promises. We fail ourselves: “I won’t eat that, I won’t go there, I won’t say that.” But God, who has promised to answer when we call, has not failed to do so.
Salvation comes from the God who died and lives again so that we may be free! We believe that God is who He says He is, and that He will do what He says He will do.
We call on an eternal, life-giving God. And He answers.
Recalibrate: How best can you help those who struggle to believe that God will answer when they call?
Respond: Ask for the clarity to know who God is and comprehend His ability to save.
Research: Find a variety of “sinner’s prayers” and compare their content with the idea of salvation Paul highlights in Romans.
Remember: “How beautiful are the feet of the ones who bring good news of good things” (Romans 10:15, KNT).
Jenniffer Ogden serves as the children and family pastor for Walla Walla University Church in College Place, Washington. She has been pastoring since 2009 and serves our church community masterfully as she ministers to kids and parents, adults and old folks alike.
As your child grows up, they will notice differences in people. The way they look, how they act—and they will decide whether or not they like them. Paul reminds us that categorizing people the way we do is not something Jesus does. What are some healthy ways you can teach your child not to categorize people? With that being said, what ways are you teaching your child to be safe and aware of strangers? Remember there is a difference between safety and the love of Jesus! Pray for guidance as you parent your child.
Do you remember how yesterday we talked about the verse Paul used from the book of Isaiah in his letter to the Romans? Do you remember what it said? “Anyone who trusts in Jesus will not be disappointed!” Who do you think Isaiah and Paul were talking about when they said the word “anyone?” Do you think they meant just some people? Or maybe just the smart kids in your class? Or even just the nice kids in your class? No! Anyone means everyone! Paul wants us to remember that it doesn’t matter who you are, what you look like, or what bad things you might have done. If you believe in Jesus, you won’t be disappointed. Today, play with someone whom you haven’t played with before. Do you think Jesus would play with them?
The New Testament often tells us that we can be adopted into the Heavenly family. I have some surprising news for you. The “adoption” that Paul talks about isn’t what you think—it’s better! In our world, when a child is adopted they come into the family with equal standing and the same rights as any natural children of the family. Not in Paul’s world. In those days, a child was adopted to be greater than the natural children! Most of the Roman emperors whose names are famous were not the biological children of the previous emperor; they were chosen and adopted in order to take the throne from the other kids in the family. True! That’s what Paul was talking about when he said that you can be adopted into the family of Heaven. We were created “a little lower than the angels”—but only for a while. Imagine that!