there are 168 hours in a week. if we are lucky we get the privilege to ministry to kids and families one or two of them. for families there every time the door is open we might just be lucky enough to get three hours of focused ministry time. but still, three hours leave us lacking when we are reminded that a week offers 168. that is why our ministries need to become more family focused.
become intentional about building a bridge from church to home so that the learning can penetrate every aspect of life.
what are some ways you are dropping the truth between church and home?
begin now by making it a point in all you plan to have a goal to make sure the truth not only impacts families within the walls of the church but as they leave the church as well.
how are we making the most of the time we have families together on campus so that when they leave their shared experiences may lead to more discussion and learning?
Jesus didn’t send everyone to a different classroom on the hillside. He simply gathered a crowd and taught.
family worship is a great time to teach truths on a kids level with activities that all ages will enjoy.
invite parents to programs you already have going on. make sure they attend Gospel and new Christian classes so that they can learn to guide their children in spiritual truths in a safe environment.
don’t reinvent the wheel and add tons more to your church calendar. simply take a look at your current events and see how you can make them more family friendly.
are we partnering to celebrate what families are already celebrating by doing so in a way where the truth of Jesus is the greatest takeaway?
when planning to celebrate spiritual markers with families use these questions as a filter:
is the Gospel at the core of the spiritual marker celebration?
does this celebration create an opportunity to build a bridge from the church to home?
how will your celebration differ from the way the world would celebrate? (is Jesus the takeaway?)
is the Word of God the backbone for this celebration?
how will you help families apply these truths beyond the walls of the church?
to see more in a past blog about celebrating spiritual markers click here.
with a strategic recipe for family time together we can be more focused on the truths we want to pass on to families.
present the truth from God’s Word. make sure families open their Bibles and see the source of the lesson taught.
experience the truth together in a hands-on way using different learning styles.
discuss the truth. ask several questions to get past their easy answers to what they really believe.
create a memory/object to take home to continue the conversation or remind the family what they had experienced together.
if we say we are family focused, we need to communicate the cause, the why, and the goal of all we are planning to come alongside families as they journey toward Jesus together.
do parents know the goal of your ministry?
do parents know the goal of each activity?
are you regularly updating parents on the truths you shared and how they can follow-up?
are you asking families questions to get to the root of what they believe?
are you forgetting non-traditional families like foster/adoptive families, divorced families or grandparents raising grandchildren?
recently i posted a picture of our dawson kids promotion packages on instagram and i had several people ask me what was inside them. so, i thought i would share the contents of our promotion mailout on here. i would love to know what you guys send out to inform and get kids excited about the new year.
first up is a promotion letter explaining our theme for the year and details parents need to know about promotion sunday morning. there is nothing earth shattering or life-changing in this letter, but you can view it here. especially, because we have many new 1st grade families moving up, we want them to be familiar with our dk staff and how to reach us, so we include a sheet with staff pictures and contact information.
another important element in this promotion package is the behavioral guidelines. these are guidelines we require all children to follow so that we can provide the safest and most effective ministry environment. you can view it here. we use to include our medical release form, but we have moved that to our website. also included is a connect card so families know where to find us on social media and the web. then, each child gets a sticker that has their assigned class (in the class color) on it so they can wear it on promotion sunday and match it to the balloons in their new room.
and lastly, we have a giveaway that goes with our theme of the year. during the 2017-2018 we are going to focus on equipping kids with God’s Word so they can be confident in Christ. (i’ll blog more about our equipped theme later.) this year, each child will receive a five color highlighter that we are encouraging them to bring it to church each week. as we dig into God’s Word together, we are going to have them highlight and write truths in their Bibles, highlight the Gospel God’s Plan for me, and more. if we are going to successfully equip them to be disciples in this world, we have to be intentional about training them in the truth of God’s Word.
okay, i shared, now i want to hear what you mail out for the new year.
i am so excited and honored to be a part of some great, free, and Gospel-centered training for kids ministry. lifeway kids has produced six videos all focused to help challenge and encourage you to make sure your ministry is Gospel-centered. all these truths come from my favorite new #kidmin book,Gospel centered kids ministryby brian dembowczyk. not only are these videos a great resource, each video comes with a handout download to work through with your team. we plan to show two at promotion training and then email the others out through the first couple of months of the new year. below are images that show the subject of each video and the link, so that you can have access to this relevant, Christ-centered resource.
i would love to hear how you plan to use this resource in your ministry. comment below.