Mexican Boy

Matthew 19:14
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

After stepping off church staff to begin an itinerant ministry, my first kid’s crusade was in a small rural farming community in southern Idaho. Each night Mexican migrant children poured through the doors of the church. Their parents worked the seasonal harvest and moved on from crop to crop throughout the summer.

The kids were bubbling with excitement and thrilled to win prizes. Bringing a Bible earned points for their teams.  One boy raced up to me and asked, “Hey lady, hey lady, do I get points for a half a Bible?” It turned out “half a Bible” was a New Testament someone loaned him.

On the third night, a special visitor came in the door. He was a young boy, with one leg, being carried by his older brother. As the evening progressed; songs, games, puppets, and the Bible story, I noticed this boy was especially enthralled. In the end, I gave the invitation to receive Christ, and as children came forward, this boy suddenly stood balancing on one leg. With great seriousness and determination, he began a slow hop to the front towards me. It seemed this was a decision requiring an effort he alone needed to make.

Reaching me, he looked up expectantly.  I took his hand and asked his name.

“Jesus” he replied or “Hay-Soos” as it sounds in Spanish.  It is a common Spanish name. Awkwardly I began to pray for Jesus to receive Jesus’ forgiveness.
I prayed, he prayed.
“In Jesus name, amen,” we finished together.

Watching him return to his seat, I knew this moment would be in my heart forever.