|Theme:||Loving others as Jesus loved us (6th Sunday of Easter)|
|Object:||Cookies (see recipe below)|
|Scripture:||My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. John 15:12 (NIV)|
The cookies that I brought to share with you today are very special. These cookies were made from a recipe that was used for many years by a special lady named Lottie Moon. Lottie Moon lived many years ago. She grew up in a Christian home and went to church and learned about Jesus and his love.
Lottie had six brothers and sisters. One of her sisters was a missionary in China. Reading the letters her sister wrote helped Lottie to come to love the Chinese people and decide that she also wanted to be a missionary to China. Lottie went to college and studied to become a teacher then went to help her sister teach the children of China (IME 2004).
When she arrived in China, Lottie started a school and began to hold classes to teach boys and girls to read the Bible. At first, the Chinese children were afraid of Lottie. She tried to think of a way to get the children to trust her. She decided to bake some cookies, but that didn't work. You see, the children were afraid to eat the cookies because they were afraid that they might have poison in them. One day, one of the boys was so hungry that he decided to try one of the cookies. When he didn't get sick, the other children decided to try them too. Soon, Lottie became known as "the cookie lady." After the children ate the cookies, they would talk with Lottie, hear Bible stories and learn to read (IME 2004).
Why do you think Lottie loved the Chinese children so much? I think it was because she believed and put into practice what Jesus taught his disciples. Jesus said, "Love one another as I have loved you." How much did Jesus love us? He loved us so much that he gave his life for us. Lottie loved the children of China so much that she dedicated her life to teaching them how to read and write. And, even more important, she taught them about Jesus and his love.
Jesus loves you too -- and he wants you to love others as he loved you. How can you show the love of Jesus to other people? Maybe you could bake cookies for a someone who is sad or lonely. Maybe you could be a friend to a new student at school who doesn't know anyone. You could go to visit and pray for someone who is sick. There are a lot of ways to show people that you love them.
God wants all of us to be missionaries -- like Lottie Moon -- but you don't have to go to China to be a missionary. You can be a missionary right where you live! In fact, I think that is what God wants us to do.
Dear Jesus, we thank that you loved us so much that you gave your life for us. Help us to love one another as you have loved us. Amen.
International Mission Emphasis 2004; "How Lottie Loved Jesus"
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