“Helping them get to Heaven”Categories: Christian Principles
Fred B. Craddock tells the following story:
"At Fannin County Hospital, ministers take turns being chaplain for the week. I took my turn, and the week I was on watch, there was a baby born. Not a lot born in that little bitty thirty-bed hospital. But I went there, it was about nine o’clock in the morning, and I saw all these people gathered, looking through the glass. There was that little bitty new baby, and it looked like a clan of people gathered around. I said, "What is it, boy or girl?"
"It’s a girl."
"What’s the name?"
"Well, is the father over here in this group?"
"No." Looked back over there, and leaning against the wall, was a young man.
He said, "I’m the father."
I said, "Baby’s name Elizabeth?"
"Beautiful baby." She was squirming – you couldn’t hear through the glass – but she was squirming and red faced, and all like that. I thought maybe he might be concerned, and I said, "Now, she’s not sick. It’s good for babies to scream and do all that. It clears out their lungs and gets their voices going. It’s all right."
He said, "Oh, I know she’s not sick. But she’s mad, preacher." I said, "Why’s she mad?" He said, "Well, wouldn’t you be mad? One minute you’re with God in heaven and the next minute you’re in Georgia."
I said, "You believe she was with God before she came here?
He said, "Oh, yeah."
I said, "You think she’ll remember?"
He said, "Well, that’s up to her mother and me. It’s up to the church. We’ve got to see that she remembers, ‘cause if she forgets, she’s a goner." (Craddock Stories, p.127)
We might not agree with the young father’s thinking totally but he does state an important truth about his young daughter’s future; if his daughter is ever to have a home in Heaven it is up to him and his wife and the church to help her get there.
This is what the Bible has been telling us all along in Ephesians 6:4, it reads, "Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord."
And as a congregation of God’s people it is our goal to help children get to Heaven. Jesus said in Matthew 19:14, "Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven."
This is why we at the Camden Ave. Church of Christ offer weekly Bible School, Vacation Bible School, encourage Christian youth camp, and do what we can for our youth’s spiritual life by offering other spiritual activities. We want to do our part in helping our children go to Heaven. But parents must do their part in seeing the importance of these spiritual activities and getting your children to these spiritual opportunities.
If we do not help our children get to Heaven, who will? Think about it!
Mark T. Tonkery