Sunday, June 10, 2012

Remember Me

"You are so polite" my husband said as I hung up the phone. "Thanks, I take telephone etiquette to heart." "No, I mean you are super-polite, over-the-top polite. I am never so polite. Nobody is so polite." Paying attention now, I wondered whether I crossed the line, maybe I sounded patronizing. Turns out, the compliment was genuine, and Tim was inspired to improve his manners. Not that he used to be rude. Oh, he might display moderate rudeness at times, but only when the other person was being foolish. And since Tim is a wise guy ... well, you get the picture.
Good manners undergird our every relationship, so we teach our youngsters the nuances of acceptable conduct. We guide them in proper behavior, correcting their mistakes. Woe to the children of military families who receive the most rigorous training of all. Count your blessings if you don't know what I mean. The rest of us will never be able to omit the appropriate "sir" or "ma'am" when addressing our betters.
My goal in today's lesson is for the children to practice remembering Jesus in two ways. First by thinking back, as we do when we recall the past. Second by keeping Jesus in mind, as we do when we remember our manners.
Jesus said "Do this in remembrance of me," meaning continuing, repeated remembering. To Christians nothing should be more at the forefront of our psyches than Jesus proclaiming the new covenant, offering salvation to all the world. Which begs the question, would the world be different if we remembered Jesus as pervasively as we remember our manners?

Who should we talk about today? {jesus} Who? {Jesus} I can't hear you! {JESUS!} OKAY!
Do you like shouting "Jesus" in church? I taught you to do that a long time ago. I taught you to do it because I want you to remember Jesus.
When grownups come to church they also remember Jesus. We have a special way of remembering Him. We have a bit of bread and a sip of grape juice. Jesus taught us to do this a long, long time ago, right before He died. He said we should do it to remember Him.
There are two ways to remember.
First, you can think back. What did you eat for breakfast this morning? {answers} Very good. You were not thinking about your breakfast, but you thought back and remembered your breakfast.
Second, you can keep something in your mind. Remember your manners. I know you are all remembering your manners right now. You are not talking when I am talking. You are listening to me. Those are good manners. We should keep our manners in mind always.
Jesus wants us to remember Him.
The first way to remember Jesus is to think back, like you remembered your breakfast. We can think back about Bible stories we learned about Jesus. Can you think of any Bible stories about Jesus?
{If the kids are little, or having trouble, help them out, "remember how Jesus walked on water and how He fed thousands of people with only two fish and five loaves of bread, and how He made a blind man see, and how He ... "}

The second way to remember Jesus is to keep Him in mind. Keep Jesus in your mind like you keep your manners in mind. Jesus wants us to always remember He died to save our lives. Bread helps us grownups remember Jesus' body when He died. Grape juice helps us remember Jesus' blood when He died. Jesus died to save the world. Can you remember that? Can you remember Jesus?
Dear God,
Thank you for teaching us all about Jesus in the Bible.
Please help us to always remember Jesus died to save us all.
In His name we pray,
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