Chatting over a much-anticipated ‘kid-free brunch’, my friends and I couldn’t help but share our anxiety at how our new kindergarteners were getting on without us. “It feels a bit like we’re sending them out into the lion’s den,” one friend remarked. And I couldn’t help but agree. In a culture that’s growing increasingly hostile to the gospel message, these little ones with their innocent, fledgling faith can seem a tad vulnerable to the secular influence that’s all around us.
Yet, I was comforted recently by this small detail in Scripture about a man named Obadiah—a palace administrator for King Ahab:
“Obadaiah was a devout believer in the Lord. While Jezebel was killing off the Lord’s prophets, Obadiah had taken a hundred prophets and hidden them in two caves, fifty in each, and had supplied them with food and water” (1 Kings 18:3-4, NIV).
What a legacy in just two sentences! This man, despite working for a king who “did more evil in the eyes of the Lord than any of those before him” (1 Kings 16:30, NIV), refused to be corrupted by the immorality surrounding him, and instead remained fully devoted to the Lord. More than that, he actually carried out a daring rescue to save the lives of God’s people—an act that would surely have ended in his own death had he been caught.
In hindsight, it’s not hard to conclude that God placed Obadiah exactly where he was supposed to be—in the darkest of places—in order to accomplish His purposes for His people and His Kingdom. And He does the same for our children.
If your child’s school, sports team, or social group appears hostile to Jesus Christ, don’t be too discouraged. In fact, be encouraged! For God is giving our children an opportunity to be salt and light in a culture of brokenness and need. To point weary, hopeless souls to the true King of Kings, and perhaps even play a small part in God’s rescue plan for the people He has called them to love, right where they are.
So, as we send our children to school, to drama club, to soccer practice, and the like, let’s trust that God has them—and us—right where He wants us.
For such a time as this.