24 Hours 4 Him


twenty years ago, as i began my time in kids ministry, i looked at events in youth ministry like d-now and thought, why don’t the kids have that? through the desire to offer concentrated time in God’s Word and fellowship with other kids and adults, 24 hours 4 Him was born. this year as i participated in my 20th weekend i was blown away, yet again, to see God work in and through the lives of kids and their leaders. here are my favorite take aways:

  • leadership – dawson kids associate minister to children, jon meads, was the main one in charge of this event and he did such an amazing job with all the details. this allowed me to get to spend time and plan some special nuances like prayer stations and worship elements.
  • worship leaders – we have had a great history of worship leaders at 24 hours 4 Him. (i.e. yancy and the lads) this year was no exception. we were so blessed to have our centrikid camp worship leaders, johnathan and emily martin, lead us in worship.(that is them singing on the video below.) i so love their humble, Christ-centered hearts to lead children and families to the foot of the cross.
  • curriculum – we loved using the zip curriculum from lifeway. it was super flexible and came complete with interactive lessons, media, and special area options. i highly recommend it.
  • prayer stations – instead of a service project, we had kids rotate through prayer stations. (this went along with our church’s theme of prayer for the year.) this time was all planned out for the adults so they were able to sit back, enjoy, and experience it with the kids.  i loved watching the adults and kids gather in smaller groups and walk through interactive prayer stations that all focused on one of the names of Jesus the kids were learning about for the weekend. at each station kids received a bead to spell out Jesus. at the end of the prayer stations they made a Jesus bracelet and wore it until closing worship. at the end of the 24 hours i challenged all the children to give that bracelet to someone who needs to hear about Jesus. i have been blown away by stories of children being the church and sharing Jesus with people in their missions field.
  • t-shirt day – this is always my favorite day after the long weekend. i believe that possibly one day children will not be allowed to wear scripture shirts into schools, so we are intentional about sharing God’s Word while we can. kids all wear their 24 Hours 4 Him shirts to school on monday and i love to hear the reports about how the name of Jesus and the Word of God trickles through the classrooms, hallways and carpool.

check out our video for the weekend below. also i have included some resources to give you insight into our scheduling and planning.




TradingCards19 copyover 15 years ago, when i was just beginning in the kidmin world, i had such a burden for children to be given the opportunity to participate in an event that was intentional about Bible study and discipleship.  i knew their youth world would be scattered with “disciple now” type events, but why not provide a one night event for children where they are brought together to:

– study God’s Word in a interactive way
– worship God in a kid-friendly setting
– be poured into by passionate adults and youth
– build relationships with their peers in a safe environment
and more.

so, from this vision came 24 Hours 4 Him – a spring discipleship event that begins at 6p.m. on a friday night and ends at 6p.m. on 24hours07logosaturday night.  yes, the kids sleep.  we even put them to bed in order of their age.  no, we don’t sleep in family homes.  we nestle down right in church classrooms so we don’t lose anytime driving back and forth to the church.

Screen Shot 2012-01-30 at 10.40.07 AMour themes come from great sources like northpoint’s superheroes curriculum, children desiring God backyard Bible club lessons, orange’s past vbs curriculums, and more.  the entire 24 hours revolves around the theme in hopes of not only helping children understand these truths with their head, but to grasp them with their hearts and then apply them to their lives.

the schedule usually looks something like this:GodWins3.C


  •  children arrive, report to BIble study rooms, and play a get-to-know-you game
  • dinner
  • Bible study (by grade)
  • worship
  • 1st & 2nd graders go to bed while 3rd-5th graders participate in special areas (i.e. cooking, crafts, drama, puppets, secret service, etc.)
  • 3rd & 4th graders go to bed while *5th graders have a special late night event.
  • bedtime


  • wake up
  • breakfast
  • morning celebration
  • quiet time
  • Bible study
  • lunch
  • BIble study
  • recreation
  • Bible studyWisdom3
  • clean-up, pack-up (kids help put the church back together for sunday morning.)
  • closing worship (parents are invited to attend with their children.)
  • go home

24truthlogonoverseadditional information

  • Bible study leaders are parents, college students, or older youth.
  • parents come and help serve meals and also make goody buckets for each of the Bible study leaders.
  • we have a designated first-aid/meds person that handles any medicine brought by parents for their children during the weekend.
  • we bring in a special speaker and worship leader for the worship sessions.  (children also get the chance to lead in worship.)
  • children receive a t-shirt from the weekend and we encourage them to wear it to school the next week.
  • parents receive an immediate email after dropping their children off that shares with them what the children are studying that weekend and ways to continue the learning at home.
  • *the late night 5th grade activity is fun activity where children make bridges out of various random supplies. (i.e. straws, legos, rubber bands, paperclips, etc.) then, we talk through how Jesus alone is the bridge between our sinful selves and our Holy God.  children then fill out a questionnaire about where they are spiritually, so that we can more effectively minister to them in their remaining months in kids ministry.

i have been blessed at both of the churches i have served at with pastors that understand the importance of children’s ministry and take time to promote andScreen shot 2011-03-09 at 11.02.28 AM share the vision with others.  below is an excerpt of what my current pastor, dr. gary fenton, is sharing in next week’s church newsletter about dawson kids first ever 24 Hours 4 Him.

“Speaking of children… as we do frequently at Dawson, because ministry to children, preschool, middle and high school students are a priority… this Friday, March 01 6:00 pm to Saturday 6 p.m. will be one of the more important 24 hour periods in the church this year. We will host “24 hours 4 Him.” This is an intentional step toward healthy Christian discipleship that involves interactive Bible Study, age appropriate worship and teaching for grades 1-5. In the last several years several books including You Lost Me and Almost Christian have documented that a large number young adults 18 to 30 indicate that their faith is not relevant to the issues they face in life. Many of them have not totally abandoned their faith in God; but they are unsure if and how it relates to their daily life. The Christian faith is unfortunately too often seen as a ticket to heaven, rather than a way of life. Some who drop out may have had experiences with God but have never learned about a daily walk with God. Others may have just heard enough to be confused. During 24 Hours 4 Him children will learn about heroes of the Old and New Testament as the Bible stories will be taught in an age appropriate ways. This is not a child evangelism program but an opportunity for spiritual preparation. 

Still speaking of children…If you sense excitement on my part, you are right. The first time I heard of 24 Hours 4 Him I thought it was probably a children’s version of a lock-in during which exhausted kids would be manipulated into some type of emotional decision. Then my first grade grandson participated in one in another state and I saw how helpful and healthy it was for him to hear Bible stories. I learned sleep and rest were built into the program. It was like spending the night at Christian friend’s house that involved healthy Christian teaching. I invite you to be praying this wonderful foundational discipleship event.”

i so look forward to what next weekend will be and what God will do at dawson kids first 24 Hours 4 Him.  for those of you who want more info, i have provided some links to some promotional and leader information from our present 24 Hours 4 Him.  

24 Hours 4 Him registration 2013
24 Hours 4 Him leader guidelines

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