The art museum in the city where I live recently had an exhibit called "Golden Children." It's a collection of portraits of royal children and children of wealthy families who lived 400-500 years ago.
The children were pictured in very fine clothing. Some of it was made of cloth with real gold thread and had designs made of precious jewels. The girls' beautifully decorated skirts were puffed out by large hoops under them. Both boys and girls wore ribbons and fancy sashes. And hats with feathery plumes. No one wore jeans!
As we looked closely at the portraits, we saw that many of the children wore coral bracelets and necklaces, even the boys. At that time people believed that coral was a protection from disease. Parents were afraid for their children and wanted them to be safe, so they made sure they wore coral.
Kids who came to see the portraits in the exhibit were surprised. "Coral necklaces? That wouldn't keep you from getting sick!"
Kids today don't dress in such fancy clothes. And they don't expect the necklaces or bracelets they wear to protect them from anything.
But everyone wants to feel safe and protected from getting sick. Sometimes other kids tell you that they feel sick. That's a time to stop and think about God and what you know about Him.
There's a Bible verse that I've found helpful. Here's how it goes: "God guards you from every evil, he guards your very life. He guards you when you leave and when you return, he guards you now, he guards you always" (Ps. 121:7, 8, Eugene Peterson, "The Message").
This Bible verse tells you that God is taking care of you, protecting you always. Because He's guarding you, He must be right there with you. God is so powerful that nothing else is bigger or more powerful. God takes care of you because He loves you so much.
The last part of the verse reminds you that God is taking care of you every day, everywhere. When you leave for school or when you go out to play, God is with you keeping you safe - and when you come back home, too.
If you start to be afraid of getting sick, you can think instead about God and how He's always "guarding your very life." Then you will trust God to take care of you.
One day I started to feel sick. First I started to think about how I'd probably get a cold, and that it would last for a week, and that I'd feel terrible for all that time.
But then I started to think about how God was with me and how I was with God. He was loving me and taking care of me. Even if I felt sick, God was more powerful than that feeling. I could expect to feel well and happy instead. And that's just what happened. Those symptoms disappeared. I felt great. And I was so grateful to see how God was taking care of me.
It's wonderful to know you can always trust God. You can think about this every day. You can think about how God is taking care of your family and friends, too. That's a prayer, and it will help you and the people you love take care of themselves.
Fear thou not;
for I am with thee:
be not dismayed;
for I am thy God:
I will strengthen thee;
yea, I will help thee; yea,
I will uphold thee
with the right hand
of my righteousness....
I the Lord thy God
will hold thy right hand,
saying unto thee,
Fear not; I will help thee.
Isaiah 41:10, 13