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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Sad (07/26/07)

TITLE: Kumbayah
By Cherie Millsap


As a music teacher of preschool children, I have the delightful job of sitting with little ones and acting as much like a child myself as possible. But as a Christian music teacher, I also have limitless opportunities to impact their lives with the Christ who lives in me.

One such opportunity presented itself one particular morning, when the Lord was just speaking to me about the old African song, Kumbayah. I was thinking about the desperation of Africa and how the very nation itself is crying out, “Lord, come by here!” With my heart burdened for a country, I’d never been to, I shared with this little class of 4 year olds, that this song was a prayer. And if they ever needed Jesus, anytime, anywhere, all they needed to do was sing Kumbayah.

As we began to sing the song, I felt the presence of the Lord come down into that room. I looked around at the little faces singing this worn, and dusty old song. I sensed that we were truly in store for a God moment. A feeling came over the room as those precious children sang this rusty old campfire prayer. As we finished the song, one little girl in particular looked at me through eyes, swimming in tears and said “Sometimes, I just feel so sad!” I found out later that her mommy and daddy had just filed for divorce. As I put my arms around her, choked by the desperation I could see in this little girl’s face. I began to pray, “Lord, come by here!”

The Lord so beautifully showed me, that there weren’t only children, in Africa, crying out for God. But that also, in the smallest of hearts, in a nation where there is a church on every corner, that God is hearing the cry to Kumbayah!

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Member Comments
Member Date
Willa Maye08/02/07
Thank you for sharing this story. I would imagine that at some point in all of our lives, we are afforded an opportunity to share with the next generation if for no other reason than to give them hope for their tomorrows, and in their inevitable times of need.
Martha Helton08/02/07
I love that song--thanks for sharing a personal experience with this and how even small hearts can cry out to a loving God.
Emily Ritter08/02/07
Just beautifully done. And, I enjoyed the reminder of what Kumbayah means. Thanks so much for showing the broken heart of a child.
Jim Hutson08/03/07
wonderful story and an even greater truth....thank you for taking the time to put it into words.
Brenda Welc08/03/07
What a heart warming story. I remember the song well from years of church camp and it always made me feel happy. Thanks for sharing this it was wonderful.
Jan Ackerson 08/04/07
Lovely little devotional, would make a great opening for a Christian Ed. workshop.
Peter Stone08/04/07
Great story and so true. If we let God open our eyes we will see needs surrounding us.
Ginny Winters08/04/07
Great story! I love that song, I've been singing it for almost 40 years and had no idea it was from Africa!
valerie chambers08/04/07
I was so touched by your heart for children.Because of you that little class was "suffered" to Jesus and the little girl will always remember your love when she needed it the most.
Donna Powers 08/05/07
What a lovely moment of opportunity. A precious moment, well-drawn by your lovely words.
Mary Ann Konovitz08/06/07
What a poignant story, simply and beautifully told. Having worked with children myself, i know the wonder and grace of those very types of moments. Thanks for sharing.