Children's Ministry?

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Jkdbuck76, Jun 21, 2012.

  1. Jkdbuck76

    Jkdbuck76
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    One gigantic lack in our church is a viable, effective children's ministry. Our church is really good with adults and really good with up-to preschool age groups. But there really isn't much else after 1st grade by way of children's church. We don't have RA's. We don't have GA's.

    The Lord has laid it upon my heart and on the hearts of others in our local congregation to get involved with a k-5 or k-6 ministry.

    We have a trailer park filled with young kids and their parents won't so much as bring their kids. We need a bus ministry. But we also need something here to bus them to.

    I guess what I'm saying is that I want God to use me. I want to serve Him in this. So do others. But I don't know what to do. I don't know how to preach to kids or teach them Bible lessons---BUT I WANT TO!

    Bottom line: we need prayers. Then curriculum.
     
  2. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O.
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    You have my prayers.

    Teaching the Bible to children is so fulfilling. And truly, honestly, and in my humble opinion – you don’t need a curriculum except the Bible. I’ve used all sorts of curriculums and I’ve used just the Bible. I prefer using the Bible alone.




    Here’s some tips to remember.
    • Because children are very literal and struggle with abstracts, don’t start with deep doctrine. Start with the stories – primarily Genesis 1-11. If children don’t understand that God is the Creator and that He created humanity and humanity rebelled and was/is in dire need of a Savior, then Jesus Christ, the Savior, won’t mean as much to them.
    • There is LOTS of richness in the Old Testament that children can handle. Jonah, Daniel, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel, Joshua, and more. Don’t exclude the Old Testament just because the Old Testament.
    • Teach with them having a Bible and following along with you and teach in small bites. Ask them LOTS of questions. "Why do you think this happened? What do you think God is going to do? What would you have done? Can you think how this might be seen today?" You can never ask too many questions when teaching children.
    • Use LOTS of repetition. "Remember what we said last week about God telling Cain to 'Watch out! Sin is crouching at the door!'? Someone remind us of that story."
    • Make correlations to the New Testament. When telling the story of God and Cain’s conversation before Cain killed Abel, refer them to Peter saying that “ Stay alert! Our adversary is like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.”
    • Make correlations to real life that they will understand. Say, "Why do you think God made a plant grow over Jonah's head while Jonah was pouting in the sun?" Let them answer. Then say, "You know, it's kind of like a pouting two-year-old who is whining about why Mama won't give him a cookie. Sometimes she may pick him up and put him to bed. And she covers him to sooth him. But is she going to leave him there forever? No. She is going back later and pull back the cover and make him get up and eat a good lunch instead of that cookie. That's sort of what God did. He didn't leave Jonah under that shaded plant, but made the plant die so that Jonah would get up. But Jonah's problem was that he was still in a whiney mood. What do you think about that? What do you think God thinks about that?"
    • Be prepared for TONS of questions and never be afraid to say, “I don’t know ..... what do YOU think?" You might be amazed at what the Lord might lay on the heart of a child. And call on other children to answer the first child's question. Say, "Does anyone know how to answer Jeff's question about why Moses hit that rock instead of speaking to it?"
    • Don’t water down anything. If you are teaching children that you feel aren’t prepared to learn about Lot offering his two daughters to be raped, don’t “change” the facts and say “Lot offered his two daughters to be hostesses at the town celebration”. I have seen more of that than you can imagine and it makes me SEE RED!! :BangHead: You can leave out explicit details and still teach the main points of most stories that contain adult content.
    • Practice teaching the story and asking questions out loud. Practice it until you can read ANY passage in the Bible and questions to ask your audience just naturally come to mind even when you are not preparing to teach, but just going about personal Bible study.
    • Just remember that with children, it isn’t going to be the immediate results that you are looking for, but your spiritual benefits will come after much faithfulness with your time and possibly years down the road. Don’t expect them to become scholars in just one semester.
     
    #2 Scarlett O., Jun 21, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2012
  3. ktn4eg

    ktn4eg
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    Lots of wisdom in what Scarlett O has posted.
     
  4. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    Good Advice.

    But if you want to use some published materials to get you going, I have too very different reccommendations. The first would be to look at some mainstream publishers, my favorites are www.group.com and www.gospellight.com You can choose what type of age group mix you need and how much help you have, and how many kids you might have.

    The other is that there is training, materials, and support available from your local Child Evangelism Fellowship office or www.cefonline.com

    They are the "Good News Club" people who have been helping folks minister to kids for years.

    God Bless you as you take on this most important task in the Kingdom.
     
  5. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O.
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    I do like the Good News Club.
     
  6. 12strings

    12strings
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  7. Jkdbuck76

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    I already had one of the older fellow deacons say "well back when we had kids, they sat with us in church and there was no children's church."

    OK. I know. That is how it was years ago. And it is great when parents bring their kids to church and make them sit with them. But NOBODY is bringing their kids to church these days where we live! We need a bus ministry to go get them.

    I tell you folks, we just had VBS. Every year we hitch a large hay wagon to a tractor and take it thru our town...including the trailer park. The wagon serves as a means of transportation to VBS. We had 30+ kids on that hay wagon. SOMEBODY has to reach them for Christ with the gospel or they will burn in hell eternally....and well, that prospect does not sit well with me.

    In any case, I appreciate these leads on children's ministry. My wife is looking to see what is out there. Also, she has a k-12 special education teaching license and she's taught all grades. I am glad to see her getting involved too. Prayers needed!
     
  8. SaggyWoman

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    What everybody said.

    Don't be afraid to try something "different".
     
  9. ktn4eg

    ktn4eg
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    The Seven Last Words of the Church:

    "We never did it that way before!!"

    Just because something hasn't been tried before doesn't necessarily mean it's wrong---or, worse yet, unscriptural.

    If, through prayer and meditation on His Word, you believe it might be able to reach your "target group," then at least try it out.

    Maybe it'll work, and then again, maybe it won't. Don't be afraid to try a different method. If it works, and you believe the Holy Spirit can work through it, go for it. If it doesn't, try to evaluate it to determine why it doesn't. There may be some ways to improve on it.

    Just don't give up if your first try doesn't seem to work. Edison found several ways that a light bulb didn't work before he found one way that did.
     

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