As I read today’s Matthew reading – the Beatitudes – I remembered when I went to Israel. One of our stops was the Mount of Beatitudes, where they believe Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount. Our group leader gave a short devotional on the Beatitudes while other groups sang, prayed, and preached in their own languages. Then we went into a small chapel where the words of the Beatitudes, in Latin, were written around the top of the building in stained glass. I could make out a few words here and there: “hunger”, “mourn”, “inherit”.
As I read it, I also thought about my little girl and how I want her to know, like the Beatitudes assure us, God does not look at the world like we do. God looks at the poor and lowly and lifts them up – again, maybe not in the way we would deem exciting, but in ways that matter eternally. (It also made me think of this book, which I just paraphrased to several staff members, that you should buy your kids if you don’t already own it.)
Finally, it made me think that, even though our kids are squirmy and may only hear little bits of what we’re reading them, it’s worth it to read the gospels to/with our kids.
Here’s what we’re going to do to make that possible – for the next three gospels, we will provide a family reading plan – the readings will be the same passages, but we’ll help you highlight events, characters, and themes that will help the readings make the most sense to your kids. Until then, via this blog, we will provide weekly guides of what to highlight, and activities to help everything hit home.
Look for our first reading guide this Monday! To build intrigue: one topic in our reading is murder…which is always fun to talk about with 5-year-olds.