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Stories from CEF

They Need to Know Today

By Celia Brannon

A little girl’s face lit up when she heard “My God Is So Great” playing to start the 5-Day Club® at her community center. “This is a good song” she nodded approvingly. This group of 14 children was the older of two groups going on at the same time. These kids were chock full of personality!

I am amazed at how much a 5-Day Club packs into an hour—videos, music, memory verses, stories, games. Salvation.

Mari, Clay, Stephen and Jadyn, teens who gave up part of their summer to be trained through Christian Youth In Action® (CYIA™) to teach these clubs were there and ready for the children along with an adult teacher, Sherry Polk. The meeting kicked off with a prayer led by one of the boys in the group. He was young, but it was fervent. The memory verse of the day was John 14:27. The verse was a little bit longer than the day before, and several of them just nearly had it down but needed some help.

When Stephen, one of the teen leaders, called out “Word up!” the children answered back in unison, “Jesus loves everyone!” There was a recap of the missionary story about Hudson Taylor from the day before, which had ended on a cliff hanger. The kids had come back wanting more!

Sherry then dived into the story of the woman at the well. Some of the kids got a little ahead and asked about Jesus dying on the cross. This group wants to “just cut to the chase” as we say.

“He LET them do that?!” one boy exclaimed.

Another boy, incredulous, “Hold up, hold up, hold up!” He wasn’t having this idea of dying willingly for someone else.

There was some real outrage in their voices. Sherry told them simply that Jesus was born to die; that was why He came to Earth. “That sounds horrible!” exclaimed another.  They had heard about Jesus dying on the cross. What’s not immediately obvious is if they knew why. I think about all the “what ifs” here.

  • What if they never got to hear why it happened?
  • What if they never knew He was willing to die for us?
  • What if they thought we have an angry God because they thought He had been wronged?
  • What if they thought he didn’t have the power to save himself?
  • What if they had to continue with all these thoughts for decades until they met Him for their judgment?

Enter CEF® and the 5-Day Club®.

Jadyn picked up the Hudson Taylor cliffhanger where they had left off on Tuesday. When he started ending the story for the day, the kids began to protest. “Please don’t say come back tomorrow!” “We need to know today!” “AUGH”!

I was furiously taking notes of all the steps for a successful Wednesday when the boy with the fervent prayer next to me whispered, “What are you writing about?” I whispered back that I was taking notes to tell people about this club. “Oh, yeah,” he said, “that’s gonna be a good story.” He must love this hour each day.

The children are listening. We must finish telling them the whole story. They need to know today.

Learn More about 5-Day Clubs

Find out what a 5-Day Club is and how you can get involved.