Today I taught 3rd grade Bible! Scary, huh? The discipline of substituting every once in a while for an elementary teacher promotes an inner mystical spiritual experience that causes me to pray more for all who teach these young ones full of energy and questions. With class blessedly over, you might think I am now reflecting on how crazy bad I am at 3rd grade classroom management (…and maybe I should spend some time on that). But actually, I can’t stop reflecting on a “3rd grade” understanding of Simon Peter the “dirty” fisherman on the shore of Galilee. The whole story just blows up when Peter begs Jesus to get away from him, a “dirty” sinful man. And Jesus tells him, “No, I think you are gonna follow me.” Everyone in 3rd grade may not have been, but I was undone.
You know, I think you should teach CRICS 3rd grade kids sometime. The Holy Spirit may just use the experience to show you what it really means to belong. At CRICS, Jesus often leads us into a place not so different from a fishing boat. We step in and he says, “I got this! Just follow me.” It’s really another way of saying, “You belong here.” As CRICS takes Jesus up on his “I got this,” we find ourselves belonging to 3rd graders and to 12th graders and to everyone in our community. The really great thing about CRICS is how we get to see Jesus waving kids in each day and telling them, “I got this…you belong.”
And just maybe Jesus is waving you in too. I wonder if “You Belong Here”…at CRICS?