I Have the Best Job in the World3 min read

As I have served in the teaching ministry in an early childhood center, I’ve often said, “I have the best job.” I’ve had the calling, privilege, honor, and responsibility of sharing the message of Jesus and His incredible saving love with infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and their parents on a daily basis.

At home and in church they hear the songs and stories of our wonderful God in utero, as preborn children begin to hear at twenty weeks following conception. After birth, through the waters of Baptism, they receive the gift of faith and forgiveness for their sins; God’s spirit comes to make His home in them and they receive the promise of life forever with God and His people.

At school, at home, and at church, they sing of Jesus’ love. One of the first songs is “Jesus Loves the Little Ones Like Me, Me, Me.” It’s spine-tingling to see their smiles and fingers pointing to themselves and others. I’m always reminded of Psalm 8:2, “From the lips of children and infants You have ordained praise…” As they learn how to sit, stand, and walk, they sing and thank God for the wonderful bodies He gives each of us.

As they learn how to hold their own bottle, use spoons and feed themselves, they learn to thank God for the food He lovingly provides. Even before they can say the words to the prayers, they smile and pretend to speak the words and shout out sincere “Amen’s.”

As they interact with each other in the different learning centers and during circle time, they experience not only God’s love and forgiveness, but also receive the foundational tools of literacy, math, science, social studies, art, music, etc.

Each day there is outdoor time—an opportunity to learn more about our bodies and experience the wonderful world God created. Rest time is a perfect time to remind the children that Jesus promises to be with them all the time in the words “And, surely I am with you always” (Matthew 28:20).

Early childhood teachers permeate God’s story throughout the day. But “Jesus time” and chapel are highlights of the day and week. Infants, toddlers, and preschoolers look forward to this gathering time and eagerly participate in the songs, prayers, and interactive Bible stories. They love hearing God’s story of love for them and all people—that He loves us so much He sent Jesus to be our Savior. I still have a picture one of the children drew for me. It shows a simple drawing of Jesus on a cross. The teacher helped her print the words, “Jesus loves even you, Mrs. Judy.”

It’s obvious they are learning so much, and always with Jesus at the center. I am reminded of Paul’s words to Timothy: “But, as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you have learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:14-16).

Yes, I love being a Lutheran early childhood educator. I have the best job.

Photo (c) Prixel Creative/Lightstock

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About the Author

Judy Williams is Minister for Families with Young Children at Trinity, Clinton Township

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