Last weekend we watched the movie “Rise of the Guardians,” a new DreamWorks animation.
Over dinner, we had the following conversation –
Me: Kaden, do you remember the conversation between Santa and Jack Frost?
Me: What is your center?
Kaden: I think I am like Jack Frost.
Me: What do you mean?
Kaden: I think “fun” is my center.
Me: OK. Thank you for being honest.
Me: To be really honest, I think “ministry” is my center.
I know that we are praying and preparing to start a church named “Center Church” where Jesus is the center. But you know what I am learning? I can’t make Jesus the center of my life no more than I could make you obey me.
Kaden: What do you mean?
Me: What do you think Jesus’ center was?
Kaden: Us? – like saving sinners.
Me: I think before his work to save sinners, Jesus’ center was his Father.
Because his Father was the center of his life, in obedience to the Father, he bore all sin on the cross for our good for those who believe.
Kaden: You mean “you (daddy)” have to be my center?
Me: No, I want Jesus to be your center and my center, but the way we do it is not us doing things to make Jesus our center, but knowing, believing, and trusting Jesus who made his Father the center of his life.
Kaden: Um…I don’t understand.
Me: It’s like us having fun playing soccer, watching movies together, and playing video games and learning that we have fun because I am your daddy and I love you, you are my son and I invite you to have fun with me.
Me: When we say, “Jesus is the center,” we are saying we want to follow Jesus in receiving God’s love, responding to God in obedience, and rejoicing in God’s Spirit for helping us.
Kaden: So daddy, what are we going to do for fun after dinner?
- It is a joy for me to learn from my kids, to talk with them and engage in good conversation about Jesus. It will be an ongoing conversation as they grow and mature. It is also a time that makes me truly think about how to contextualize the Gospel to those who still have not heard the Good News!
- How are your conversations with your children as you encounter culture in movies, books, and media. Are there conversations that need to happen regarding certain events or pop culture?
- Do you make Jesus your center or do you believe, trust and follow Jesus who invites us to receive God’s love in obedience to Him?