Kids and childlike memories

A Vision from the Past

Watching children at the Columbia children’s museum I remember the first years of our daughter. In the middle of the museum, a two-story image of a young boy fills the room and children climb up and slide down the slides encircling him. I focused on the slides and remembering the day Stefani celebrated her third birthday. It was the same day my doctorate was conferred but, we wished to celebrate her birthday at Chuck E. Cheese. We drove down the road from the hotel pulling into the lot without telling her where we were going.  The laughter and smile on her face started a special day for the entire Mentzer family.

After we shared the pizza, drink, and cake, we played the machines winning little trinkets from the tickets. Suddenly, Vicki cries out from across the room, “Steve, where’s Stefani?” Panic crept into our hearts and though a child cannot leave without parents, we searched the entire restaurant looking for our precious Babygirl.  Suddenly from above, a small voice calls out, “Hi Mommy! Hi, Daddy!”  Somehow, she climbed in the overhead tubes sitting at a window and looked at her bewildered parents.

 

When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.  When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.

 I Corinthians 13:11

A Certainty for the Future

Stefani has grown too tall to climb in those tubes which encircled the room at Chuck E. Cheese.  She has grown into a beautiful young woman who loves the Lord and is a gem to her parents.  Once she had a duck costume for a dance recital and would wear it till we took it away.  It is in mommy’s cedar chest we are saving for her.  Likewise, God expects us to grow, mature and leave those things we no longer fit the image of a Christian.  God expects his children to grow, mature and leave behind things like hatred, malice, evil intent and many others.  This future can be called a certainty because God continues to discipline those he loves.  This is not chastisement like a spanking but the intent of the father to grow us and mature us into the image of the Son.

 

Paul says in this passage of Scripture he put off the childish ways.  Similarly, we must put off the things in our life which reflect immaturity instead of Christian maturity. I hope we get rid of everything that stands in the way of our maturity–beginning with self.

The Quiet Life

The Beginning of our Ministry

I sit here in our quiet studio surrounded by toys, packages, six-foot soldiers, and sense the presence of God. In the quiet studio of the business and ministry, I look back to why we dedicated this business to him several years ago. We were praying with our attorney because his newborn grandson went to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburg and decided God want us to minister to children in hospitals.   We developed a ministry plan to accomplish the vision God gave us which included Santacallsforyou.com.

 ‘He says, “Be still, and know I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. ‘

Psalm 46:10-11

Matthew Henry’s commentary on this passage says the first part refers to the enemies of God who should cease their efforts to thwart his plans because he is God and nothing can stand against him. Their fruitless struggles are waged against the One who will be exalted among all the nations. Lifted up by his people we also proclaim he is LORD Almighty.  The God who makes a promise is also the one who keeps them and so his people can be still in the face of those who still struggle against God.  If we trust God was the one who established this vision in our lives then the difficult times provide a place and time for quiet because God will be exalted.

What does it mean to be exalted among the nations? Scriptures say every knee will bend and every tongue confess Christ is Lord and Matthew 5:16 reminds us to do good works so others will give praise to our Father in heaven. As we begin this work we will give others the chance to praise our God and Father. Why? Every boy growing up wants his friends thinking his dad is special! One time Stefani told me her friends said I was “cool!” As we grow in this new venture we want others to know how wonderful is the God of Jacob, Steve, and Vicki

QUIET ON THE SET!

We have seen movies where the director yells out, “Quiet on the set” as they begin filming because the only dialogue to be recorded is that from the actors. We will need quiet during our video-conference calls between Saint Nicholas and children too.  However, the hearts of Steve and Vicki can be still before our great God because he is our fortress.