The Bible teaches us to highly value our children and one of the ways that we do that is by providing for them an excellent education. There are numerous places throughout the Scriptures where parents are given instructions on training up their children. We also find that children were special to Jesus during His ministry here on earth. In addition, it has been the recognition of the church throughout her existence that caring for and teaching our children is one of the church’s biggest responsibilities. A few Bible examples:
Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it. (Pro. 22:6 nasb)
Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. (Eph. 6:4 nasb)
And they were bringing children to Him (Jesus) so that He might touch them; but the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw this, He was indignant
and said to them, "Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” (Mk. 10:13-14 nasb)
In connecting this priority to our current situation, probably the second greatest threat of this corona virus pandemic has been its threat to the training up of our children. For not only have the public and private schools been forced to close, churches have been mandated to discontinue all children’s ministry gatherings (see California Department of Public Health publication, May 25, 2020, p.10, 2nd bullet). At a time when encouragement and helpful information from trusted adults are vital to the well-being of our children, those very things have been taken out of their lives. We need to find ways to “Permit the children to come to (Jesus).”
Parents, it is crucial for you to embrace your biblical responsibility to provide for the education of your children. Many of you have ‘delegated’ this authority to the public-school system. It is time to reacquire your obligation and take a more active role in directing your children’s instruction. As helpful as classroom instruction can be, it provides nothing of the love and nurture of a parent. Also, it is vital for the church, our church to step up our support for our Living Hope parents in their task of training up their children in the way they should go. Among other things, the services we post and the services we host need to be a little more ‘kid’ friendly, both in content and participation. Finally, it is critical that we pray earnestly for our local, Morongo Unified School District as they attempt to develop a plan to safely put children back into the classroom. Whatever they come up with will become the model for in-person instruction. It’s not enough for the church to sit back and decry the ‘sad state of public education’. We must pray much for our students, their teachers, and for those making the plan.
I want to pass along a cordial invitation to our Sunday evening service at 7:00 p.m. on Sundays in the Amphitheater. It is a casual format with great worship, teaching and fellowship. Hope you are able to attend!
Yours for making disciples of every nation,
Dear Living Hope family and friends,
Because of the continued rise in COVID-19 infections in the State of California, particularly here in the Morongo Basin, after much prayer, the Elders made the decision this morning to cancel our in-person worship service in the Gym this Sunday (July 19). We feel this is in the best interest of public safety and so we will do our part to slow the spread.
There will be a prerecorded service of worship songs and a message available Sunday morning on our Living Hope Yucca Valley YouTube channel. Because things with the pandemic continue to change quickly, we will revisit this situation week by week. Keep watching your email and our church Facebook page for the latest information from the church.
The Elders also decided in our meeting to have an evening service outdoors in our church Amphitheater this Sunday. Outdoor gatherings are deemed to be safe by the State Department of Public Health as long as we practice appropriate social distancing and wear face coverings. We plan to begin at 7:00 p.m. with a time of worship in song along with a brief message from God’s word.
Please continue to pray for our church and for wisdom for the board of elders as we seek to honor God and advance His kingdom!
In the grace of our Lord Jesus,
The Living Hope Elder Board
Jorge Rodriguez, Russ Gentry, Chuck Nixon, Scott Reynolds, Dominic Heiden, Glen Kippel, Eric Armendariz, and Pastor Bill