Growing by Shrinking

January 1, 2021

It was a warm sunny day and Sofia the Racoon was looking for a safe place to have her kits (that’s what baby raccoons are called). She spotted a house with green grass, colorful flowers and tall trees that provided lots of shade from the hot sun, and thought this would be a great place to have her kits. She crawled up the side of the house, across the roof and down the chimney she went. She looked around and decided this would be a nice, quiet place to set up her nursery. 

She worked hard to get everything ready for her new kits and had just fallen asleep when she was awakened by a loud noise. There, standing in the fireplace, was a dog barking at her. Sofia was so scared she couldn’t move, but finally, the dog walked away, and it was quiet again, so Sofia decided to close her eyes and finish her nap. She had just started dreaming about the fun she would have with her new kits and all the things they would do together, like chasing butterflies and exploring new places, when she again heard a loud noise. 

This time someone was banging on the fireplace and yelling at her to get out. She jumped up, yawning and stretching her furry arms. “Why would someone be so mean to me when all I wanted to do was provide a place for my kits to be born, I’m not hurting anything,” thought Sofia. The man kept banging and yelling-he just wouldn’t stop! Sofia was so scared she ran up the chimney as fast as she could, across the roof of the house, down the side of the house and across the street. Sofia would have to find another place to have her kits, a quiet, kind and friendly place. 

There may be some scary things going on around you that you don’t understand; perhaps you worry something may happen to you. When we are afraid, we can always turn to Jesus. The Bible tells the story of Jesus’ friends sailing in a boat on the lake.The winds started blowing hard and the boat started rocking back and forth. Peter, one of Jesus’ friends, saw Him walking on the water towards them and decided to go out and meet Jesus, but then he started to worry that he would fall into the water. When he took his eyes off Jesus, he started to sink like a rock, but Jesus grabbed his arm and saved him. He told Peter, “Do not be afraid, take courage, I am here.” Jesus is always with us and He gives us courage when we are afraid. His love can make our fears disappear because He is bigger than anything that scares us.


By Kathy Clifford, Texico Conference Children’s Ministry Director