In case you were wondering, Samuel is almost 4 (April). We had already put him to bed on Sunday night and he came downstairs about a half hour later crying softly. I asked him what was wrong and he said "Jesus doesn't live in my heart". I found this to be so amazing because we haven't even talked to him about this in several months.
I walked him back upstairs and asked if he wanted to talk more about it and he said yes. I told him how when he disobeys his parents, or hits his sister or won't share with a friend that is called sin. I went through the whole story with him and then read him a book I had purchased a few years back; a children's book called I Believe in Jesus that tells how to ask Jesus in your heart and have Him be your 'forever friend'. After the book he said, "I want Jesus to love me forever and I want Him to live in my heart" so we prayed together and Samuel asked Jesus to forgive his sins, thanked him for dying on the cross and asked him to live in his heart. It was pretty spectacular!
The next afternoon, still curious about what prompted him, I asked him, "Samuel, how did you know that Jesus didn't live in your heart"? He replied quickly, "Because God told me". Oh yeah, duh.
Jeff and I have been so blessed to have been witness to God, literally, calling our little boy. We have been praying for his salvation since we found out we were pregnant with him and are rejoicing with all of heaven that God has called our little Samuel, just like in the story in which he was named after.
My Sensei Jen Roth reminded me last year that our kids don't have a junior sized Holy Spirit, they have the real Biggie size, just like us; these past few days, watching Samuel with this decision and the astounding things he seems to comprehend, has really reminded me of that. Last night, Jeff and I were talking in bed about it and he wondered aloud how many times God speaks to us but we shrug it off because we think it is hooey, hooey or couldn't possibly be God. I've been reminded these past few days that Christ asks for a "childlike" faith...sometimes I make it way harder than it needs to be.
One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place. The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was. Then the LORD called Samuel. Samuel answered, "Here I am." And he ran to Eli and said, "Here I am; you called me." But Eli said, "I did not call; go back and lie down." So he went and lay down.
Again the LORD called, "Samuel!" And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, "Here I am; you called me." "My son," Eli said, "I did not call; go back and lie down."
Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD : The word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him.
The LORD called Samuel a third time, and Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, "Here I am; you called me." Then Eli realized that the LORD was calling the boy. So Eli told Samuel, "Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, 'Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.' " So Samuel went and lay down in his place.
The LORD came and stood there, calling as at the other times, "Samuel! Samuel!" Then Samuel said, "Speak, for your servant is listening." 1 Samuel 3: 2-10