FOR... Cities - Day 5

Opening Prayer:

Lord, help me be a light for you by reaching out and touching someone who is thought to be a nuisance, Amen


Read: Mark 10:13-16
(NIV)

 “People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’ And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.”

 

Reflect:

The disciples thought these children were a nuisance and wanted them out of the way. A similar situation occurred in my first elementary principal-ship (back in the days before the inclusion of students with special needs into regular classrooms was even thought about).  We had two educable (low functioning) classrooms, a trainable (very, very low functioning) classroom and a classroom for the visually impaired.  From the beginning of my time there as principal, we had complaints from regular education parents about the conduct of the students with the special needs when they were in the lunchroom.  No one wanted to sit near these students, including adults, because they said it made them ill.

There was no guidance on how the situation could be remedied to everyone’s satisfaction.  I prayed long and hard about what to do.  The solution the Lord led me to was to spread the students with special needs among the regular education classrooms for nonacademic times like lunch, recess, P.E., etc.  It was amazing how the behavior of special education students changed when they were eating lunch with better role models.  While I can’t say everything went perfectly, the students in the regular ed. classes were much more accepting when they got to know the special education students personally.  Jesus is asking us to do this in this Scripture; we must reach out and get to know the people we would often try to avoid or consider a nuisance.

 

 Apply:

Many times, we want to avoid the people who are not like us because of physical, mental, financial, or educational differences.  It may mean they are different ethnically, culturally, or religiously.  Jesus calls us to reach out and touch those who need him right in our own community.  Look around you and see who you can reach out and touch and ask the Lord for guidance on how to do it.

 

Closing Prayer:

God, help me to let your light shine through to the world around me, particularly to those thought to be “untouchable” or a nuisance by many in our community. In his name, amen.

Terry Schneider