Nannygranne loved children, and everyone knew it. Parents often asked her to spend time with little ones, and this was always a chance to show little ones more about their Creator. Today was one of those days, and she and a child were enjoying a walk in the park.
“I see God doing something,” Nannygranne whispered.
Her little five-year-old friend suddenly looked every direction saying, “Where? Where!”
“Do you see that bird? What is it doing?”
“It’s jumping around and pecking at the ground,” he answered.
“Why do you think that bird’s doing that?”
After watching a few seconds and thinking it over, he offered, “Is he eating dirt? I don’t see any worms.”
Nannygranne knelt, gathering him in her arms and said, “Let’s watch and see what he’s getting.” After a few minutes, they realized the bird was choosing little sticks and flying away, returning to find another, and flying back to the same tree. “I think he’s building a nest for his family that’s coming. His lady bird will soon lay some eggs, and he’s getting her a nest ready.”
The boy watched a little longer, then took Nannygranne’s hand and continued their walk without comment.
“I know something else God has done on your head,” she continued, hoping to spur his curiosity.
He grabbed his head, then shook it, looking up at her with his freckled grin, “That’s funny, Nannygranne! I don’t feel anything!”
“The Bible says God knows exactly how many hairs are on your head. He also feeds the birds and takes good care of them, even dressing them in beautiful feathers. God is busy all the time, everywhere. Of course, his angels help Him get things done.”
“Oh, yeah! You mean, God is everywhere, all the time! I remember that from Bible class!” He was proud that he was already “up” on the conversation.
They continued to walk, and the boy darted off the path to a bench, jumped upon it, walking its length, then back down, racing to catch up. He took her hand again as they walked in companionable silence.
Then he asked, “Nannygranne, why do we go to church when God is everywhere?”
She stopped, turned to look at him, impressed by his sensible logic. “That’s a good point. Sometimes people think God lives in the church building or is just up in the sky. But you have learned and are wiser than that. You know that God is everywhere. And you know that we go to church to worship Him. ”
Before she continued, they arrived at another bench beneath a shade tree, so she sat down, giving them time to chat. “Do you talk in Bible class about what the church is?”
Immediately he clasped his hands, intertwining his fingers, then tenting his pinkies. “This is the church. This is the steeple. Open the doors and the church is the people!”
“That’s right! I did that when I was your age, too. Yes, the church is the people, whether they are in a building or worshipping here in the park. So when we go to church, we’re really going to BE with the church, God’s people. And when Christians get together, we love to talk about and sing to God and pray to Him together. And God loves it when we do that.”
“Oh, okay. But do we have to go to church? Sometimes I’d rather play outside or even have church in the park!” He was undoubtedly perceptive.
“A long time ago, not long after Jesus went back to Heaven after living here, God had a very wise person write a letter to the Christians who lived in Jesus’ country. God said to tell them that sometimes life was going to be busy and confusing, and maybe even dangerous. He told them that coming together to help each other understand God better, and take care of each other was very important. He said if we didn’t, we might forget God’s ways and how to love each other. Being Christians by ourselves isn’t God’s way. Then when we die, or when Jesus comes, we might be too far away from God and be lost.”
As she’d talked, he’d busied himself with a stick chasing an ant but he was quiet and listening carefully. He looked up at her and said, “When Jesus comes back, I want to be sure I’m very close to Him, so He recognizes me.”
“I do, too. So let’s both go to church and help each other be ready. That’s what I say.” As she stood, she held out her hand, and together, they continued on the path.
Then, as children usually do, he asked another question. “So, when is Jesus coming back?”
Nannygranne answered, “When we get home, let’s have a snack and look at God’s book to see what He says. How does that sound?”
“Do you have any peanut butter and jelly?” he asked.
” Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. 24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. 25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.
26 Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins. 27 There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies.” Heb 10:23-27 NLT
“Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in Heaven will enter. 22 On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ 23 But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.’ Matt 7:21-23