Sharing Jesus' Love in Times of Tragedy

Do your kids understand the importance of the Great Commission? Do they truly? It might seem like a silly question to ask of you as a missional leader, but it’s time for a little examination.

It’s hard to ignore tragedies in this world (and we shouldn’t try). The tragedies we’ve seen both very recently and in the more distant past make a few things hit home: we don’t know what the next day holds; this world needs the love of Jesus; and we have the responsibility to make His love known.

Now, more than ever, it’s time to double down on teaching kids to share God’s love with the world. With all of the tragedies we see happening on the news, it becomes more and more imperative to reach lost people in this world. The Great Commission has always been imperative, but the tragedies we read about, witness, or experience tend to make that more clear.

The kids you lead most likely aren’t informed in detail about recent tragedies (especially the violent ones). That decision belongs solely to their parents or guardians, and your meetings are not a space to make that decision for them. But that doesn't mean kids need to be uninformed about the importance of telling God’s ultimate love story to the people who need to hear it. They don’t have to know or hear the heartbreaking details you’ve come across in the news to understand the importance of giving everyone the chance to choose the saving grace of Jesus Christ.

Spend time with your kids discussing what life might be like for someone who doesn’t know about Jesus’ love. Discuss how hard it would be to get through tough life situations without His comfort and peace. Help kids understand how important it is to share Jesus with people who don’t yet realize how much they need Him.

You may be thinking, “I already do this with my kids. Why do I need to hear it again?” It’s because tragedies can open our eyes to weaker areas in missional living. So, try to use this time to examine how important your kids truly think it is to share Jesus’ love with others. Make note of any “weak spots” and think about changes or improvements you could make in your meetings to strengthen your kids in those areas.

It’s not only important for kids to understand, but for you as their leader, as well. Do some soul searching. You teach kids the importance of sharing God’s love, but is it hitting home in your own soul? Examine your commitment to missional living outside of leading kids in missions projects. Do you fully embrace the responsibility of the Great Commission, or are you missing it in all the planning and teaching? It’s a tough question to ask yourself, but it’s never a bad idea to examine it.

My prayer is that you will see in your life an even greater commitment to leading kids to share the love of Jesus with a world that desperately needs Him and that you will find that commitment in your own life, as well.


Jessica Graham copyedits children’s materials at WMU. She enjoys reading, writing, and deep conversations.

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