Rev. Ole was pastor of the local Norwegian Lutheran Church, and Pastor Sven was minister of the Swedish Covenant Church across the road. One day they were seen pounding a sign into the ground that said: DAS END IS NEAR! TURN YERSELF AROUND BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE!”
As a car sped past them, the driver leaned out his window and yelled, “Leave us alone, you religious nuts!”
From the curve they heard screeching tires and a big splash. Rev. Ole turned to Pastor Sven and asked, “Do ya tink maybe da sign should just say “Bridge Out”?
—Clarence Vander Weele
Children were lined up for lunch in the cafeteria of a Christian elementary school. At the head of the table was a large pile of apples. A teacher had posted a note on the apple tray: “Take only ONE. God is watching.”
Farther along the lunch line, at the other end of the table, was a large pile of chocolate chip cookies. A child had written a note: “Take all you want. God is watching the apples.”
When I visited a worship service in a Christian Reformed church in a nearby town, the worship leader prayed for two elderly members living in a nursing facility: “Father, we pray for Edna and Rose, who are in the restroom now. We pray for their comfort and that you will be near unto them. . . .”
During the Tulip Time Festival in Holland, Mich., we visited our son and his family, who live there. While wandering through the various beautiful tulip displays, which took considerable time, our 5-year-old, Lien, became bored and remarked, “Mom, why don’t you plant more tulips around the house so we don’t have to go through this again?”
Four-year-old Eric asked, “Mommy, where did I come from?”
“We all descended from Adam, and God made him from the dust of the earth,” his mother replied (Gen. 3:19).
Then Eric asked, “What happens to my body when I die?”
His mother answered, “Your body returns to dust.”
Eric seemed satisfied and again began playing in his bedroom. A few minutes later he shouted, “Mommy! Come quick! Look under my bed—someone is either coming or going!”
—David B. Zylstra
I was testing the children in my Sunday school class to see if they understood the good news of how we get to heaven.
I asked them, “If I sold my house and my car, had a big garage sale, and gave all that money to the church, would that get me into heaven?”
“No!” the children answered.
“If I cleaned the church every day and mowed the yard, would that get me to heaven?”
Again the answer was, “No!”
By now I was starting to smile. Hey, this was fun.
“Well, then, if I was kind to animals and gave out candy and loved my husband, would that get me to heaven?” I asked.
Again, they all answered, “No!”
I was bursting with pride for them.
“Well,” I continued, “then how can I get to heaven?”
A 5-year-old boy shouted out, “You gotta be dead!”
When my 3-year-old son opened the birthday gift from his grandmother, he discovered a water pistol. He squealed with delight and headed for the nearest sink.
I was not so pleased. I turned to my mother and said, “I’m surprised at you. Don’t you remember how we used to drive you crazy with water pistols?”
Mom smiled and replied, “I remember.”
Our church youth group had just completed a two-day spiritual retreat, the focus of which was the story of Elijah coming out of a cave and finding God in the “gentle whisper.” We made the point that ultimately God found Elijah, not the other way around, and that God seeks to find each one of us too.
As I pulled onto the highway for the ride home, the six guys in my van were munching on cookies they’d discovered in a tin on the front seat. I commented, “I see you guys found the cookies.”
A voice from the back said, “Actually, the cookies found us.”