Despite the dark foreboding skies I rode down to church on my bike and
was very pleased to arrive still dry!

     
Earlier in the week emails had been exchanged as Steve (who was
preaching this morning) suggesting a plan to involve the children in
illustrating the Sermon topic-The Prophet Haggai and the rebuilding of the
Temple.

     
Steve had a great idea that the children could construct a Duplo Temple
and then the congregation would write their thanksgivings and petitions on
post-it notes, bring them forward and stick them on the “Temple” during the
time of Prayer.

   
With 2 visitors this morning our numbers were swelled to 5 and it proved
quite a challenge to retell the salient points from Haggai using the trusty felt
board while doing a running translation as our visitors were unilingually
Francophone!

   
After the storytime we had a follow-up discussion over our
snack and then opened the borrowed bag of Duplo to begin our construction project.
Alas! No one had bothered to mention that the Duplo was actually a “Thomas the
Tank Engine” set. AGH! It took some persuading to pry the crane and railway
tracks away from the visiting 4 year old and to then confine our efforts to
covering up the track placements on the base with the plainest of the bricks!
But they had a good time and after completing our structure, each of them also
worked on an illustration using large sheets of paper and markers.

   
As these masterpieces were nearing completion, Steve arrived to carry
our “Temple” downstairs and we all hurried down to participate in the “sticky
note” prayer writing time. It all came together quite well and it was a real joy to see the children so involved in the congregational worship.

  

    This afternoon I have begun the
applique work on my eldest Godson’s Birthday Crown. William will be FIVE!! next
Sunday and it is really special to assemble a small vignette encompassing the objects
of greatest interest to him at this moment in time: – a soccer ball, dinosaur,
racing car and a strawberry; all executed in his current favourite
colours- blue, red, yellow and purple.

   While
walking Wil I have been reflecting on just how much I enjoy being with small
children. It is so evident why our Lord stood a child before the people and
told them that the qualities embodied in that small person were those which they
should strive to emulate. Innocent love, naiveté, curiosity
and honesty are all character traits which are very hard to hold onto in the
adult world and some of them are even scorned by much of society. Once lost they are almost impossible to retrieve; after all these qualities are inherent at birth they are natural, even “wild” and so cannot really be
“cultivated”. Instead we should try to nurture the wild and “child-like”
places within us and not lose them to cynicism or sarcasm…

      
 “Unless you become like a little child, you will never enter the Kingdom
of Heaven”