A new book published by Bible Media provides a tool to guide children to a relationship with Jesus.
The book With the Eyes of a Child – Sharing God’s love with the young ones, by pastor Mawonga Phaphile Celesi, is aimed at parents as well as Sunday School teachers and all those involved in children’s ministry.
There was excitement and eagerness visible on all the faces of the participants at the recent book launch hosted online due to the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.
“We thought that as adults we had the right to teach children, but you are actually saying that the true teachers from whom we can learn a lot are children,” said dr Nico Simpson, CEO of BM, who introduced and interviewed Celesi during the launch. “As a publishing house, BM is proud to publish this book,” he said.
Celesi said his involvement with teaching young people from the Bible began when he was just a teenager. One Sunday morning their Sunday School class was without a teacher because she got married on the Saturday. He says he got up and started teaching his peers and younger colleagues “and the rest is history” as he is still involved in children’s ministry.
BUY NOW: With the eyes of a child can be purchased online from the Bible Media ebookshop.
Celesi is the head of BM’s Missions Department and principal of the Nehemiah Bible Institute (NBI), a distance theological learning institute. Simpson said that BM and NBI are willing to work with church leaders to publish books and offer courses to improve skills and knowledge of the Christian life and biblical understanding.
According to the publisher, this book “marks a very significant contribution to the fulfilment of the Great Commission in three respects:
- teaching the Gospel in the African context
- preaching the Gospel with the eyes of a child, and
- sharing God’s love with the young ones in our society.”
Celesi explained that teaching and imparting Christianity, biblical values and principles is not just the job of the teacher or children’s ministry leader, but a God-given mandate given to the parents. This is because children spend only two days, more or less, in a year with Sunday School teachers if you put together all the lessons on a Sunday. He therefore urges parents to take the task of teaching their children seriously as they cannot afford to delegate it to teachers only. Covid-19 further confirmed this reality as children are now mostly at home with their parents with little contact or no contact at all with teachers.
Dr Alice King, from Christian Worship Centre, introduced herself as a student of Celesi because she is learning and gaining so much knowledge from his book. “The author has a practical understanding of a child’s thinking and the burden of the Sunday class teacher. We all need to get away from the idea that children are babies, they are in fact our teachers and natural eye-openers,” she said.
Rev Katleho Meslane, a children’s pastor based in Cape Town, agreed with Celesi that one must try to involve parents. There are many ways for parents to introduce and teach biblical principles to their children, but buying and reading this book could be the first step.
- With the eyes of a child can be purchased online from the Bible Media ebookshop or contact 021 864 8211.