What We Teach … What We Learn
Four Sundays ago we began a sermon series on “Education” by asking the question: “What does the Lord require of us?” Is there a body of knowledge that we must teach the generations to come? With that introduction, we considered several stages in life, always looking for what that particular stage had to offer by way of lessons for us all.
Jesus teaches us that children have a quality that must be retained in order to enter the kingdom of heaven. David, Israel’s king, teaches us that youth can be impetuous and overconfident—but that confidence is what enables youth to take risks others of us would never dream of. Young adults—like Timothy—have to be encouraged to use their gifts. Don’t let people look down on you because of your youth, counsels his mentor. Middle age folk often find themselves in the midst of crisis—family responsibilities, fractured relationships. “Crisis” is a word often associated with middle age; but great clarity can also emerge from such times.
This week we come full circle—an elderly man and woman hold a baby. They take great comfort in seeing this child. Old Simeon does what Jesus will do some thirty years later—he takes the baby in his arms. The elderly Anna—eighty-four years old—sees the child and can’t stop talking about him. The story tells us these two elderly saints see something in this little one that they have been waiting for.
What are you waiting for? Is age being kind to you? What are the challenges growing older presents you with? What is the joy … and what are the fears?
What kinds of emotions and thoughts do the three images evoke in you? (Love; sacrifice; hope; etc.)
The Story of Danny and Annie