I did something tonight I’ve never done before, and quite frankly something I wouldn’t rush to do on my own accord. As a pastor I will from time to time be asked to participate in various events that honestly, I don’t care much to do; but I’m a pastor and therefore I should care. Right? I did something, at least initially, out of duty or possibly perceived duty. Although, I’m almost certain I was wrong on both accounts.
Tonight I spent forty five minutes with five young boys, about the age of seven from Cub Scout Troop 733. If you know me, you know I have less than an affinity for young children. Teenagers I like. Teenagers I can handle. Teenagers I understand and know. Teenagers for me are safe. Kids–well, that’s altogether a different story. Kids scare me a bit. Kids tend to annoy me often times. Kids I don’t quite know how to handle.
But tonight was different. Dare I even say fun?
A guy from our church and part of the Sunday School class I attend asked if I’d be interested in coming in to speak to his son’s Cub Scout Troop. I was once a Cub Scout, and so I didn’t immediately dismiss the question. But knowing I’d be speaking to a group of kids caused the question to hang like a black cloud over my head. I told him I’d think about it (honestly, I might have even said I’d pray about it), somewhat hoping enough time would go by and he’d forget he’d asked me. But as the next Sunday rolled around I was again confronted with the question and I had no good reason to say no.
Fast forward a few weeks to tonight, and it’s me in a room with these five young boys, their two den leaders and a couple of parents, and I’m the show for the night. My task was simple really, talk about being a youth pastor and God. What ended up happening might be described as controlled chaos by some outside looking in. But for me, the time spent with these young boys was a time of hearing them retell some of their favorite Bible stories. Even though I was the speaker for the evening, they did most of the talking. We talked about Moses and Johna, and then Moses some more. They were fascinated with the story of the Burning Bush and the fact that Moses was so intimately connected [my word, not their’s] with Moses. We recalled the 10 Commandments and toward the end of the time, one of the boys reminded us all of the theme of the night. “We need to obey God.”
I’ll admit I love seeing when young people get it. When they have that God moment and you get to see it.
I was reminded of this simple, yet profound truth tonight by the little children themselves. And while I don’t believe I’ll be signing up any time soon to be a regular touring the Cub Scout circuit, it was a fun evening. I concluded with a couple rounds of Sharks and Minnows and then had a brief conversation about the weather in Texas with one of the parents.
I must admit, I like when God takes me out of my everyday and tosses in a bit of random to my routine. I only hope next time I’m quicker to realize and respond to what He’s doing. Thanks boys for a good evening together.