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"Whose Child Is This?"

June 23, 2018
By Pastor Bill Te Winkle

I changed my Profile photo on my Facebook page to a picture of me holding a newly baptized baby boy.  It was our Vacation Bible School Sunday, so instead of the usual ‘church’ background, there is a backdrop of an ocean beach where the children were ‘shipwrecked’, waiting for Jesus to rescue them.  When my wife, Jill, saw it she commented, “People are going to wonder whose baby that is?” 

A short time later I met with a woman who had lost her young son, and the verse the Holy Spirit led her to was, “’Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,’ declares the LORD.” (Jeremiah 1:8, NIV)  Earlier that day, while searching for new music take away the monotony of my morning walk, my music service selected the Talley Trio singing Orphans of God (Twila J. Labar, Joel Lindsey).  The lyric is powerful, and you should listen to the whole song, but here is the part that got caught in my throat:

There are no strangers.
There are no outcasts.
There are no orphans of God.
So many fallen, but hallelujah,
There are no orphans of God. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZ-afR8GNt0)
 

The pictures and sounds of the immigrant children at our border, separated from their parents, is a political problem with varying views of who is at fault. The parents? The politicians?  But the picture that keeps coming back to my mind is that some priest or pastor probably baptized those children and put a mark of the cross on their forehead, saying, “You have been marked as God’s own forever.” It is for the politicians to assign blame for the children’s plight. It is for the Church to be the presence of God who rescues these ‘shipwrecked’ lives.  It is for me, as a follower of Christ, to make sure these children know that they are not abandoned orphans of God.

The disciples restrained children from approaching Jesus. “When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me….”  Whose child is this?

Shalom,
Pastor Bill