Usually God is portrayed as a good or rather the best friend to children, which is very true. We as teachers have in mind that such a great God calls us His friends. But while presenting it to kids, the emphasis is given only on the friendly nature of God. As a result, kids see Jesus more as a friend than as God. Is there a problem in such a case? Yes! We tend to limit the greatness and power of God because when we say friend, we see him as someone equal to us. Yes, He made us his brothers and sisters by shedding His precious blood on the cross. Does that mean He is weak like us? No, He is still the powerful Almighty God who deserves fearful reverence. The more we magnify Him in our eyes as God, the more we get to experience Him as God. Is it not right to teach our children that He is the great matchless God who is humble enough to be our friend? This year we are aiming on striking a balance between the godliness of Jesus and His humility in being our friend.
Who else could be a best example who saw Jesus as God and friend than Peter, one of Jesus’ first disciples? Peter on his first encounter with Jesus saw Him as God and his response was, ‘Get away from me Jesus. I am a sinner’(Luke 5:8). Three years later, this same Peter discovers a friend in Jesus and he tells Him, ‘I love you Jesus’ (John 21:15,16,17). This year’s theme ‘Do you love Me?’ has been taken straight from the words of Jesus to this ordinary fisherman, Peter. His answer to this question made him do extra-ordinary things for God.
Our earnest prayers and great hope is that the kids will know that Jesus is The God and there is no other, which will result in repentance; that they will also have the revelation that Jesus has paid a huge price on the cross to reconcile us to Him as His friends once again; that their response to His question will be, ‘I love you Jesus’.