Forced to serve?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Jereynolds, Aug 31, 2012.

  1. Jereynolds

    Jereynolds
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    There is a local Baptist church in my area that has implemented a policy that if you have children that participate in the childcare during church service then the parents have to serve in a childrens class atleast once a month or their children will not be able to attend.
    As a parent myself I don't mind serving and I know that alot of times the childrens ministry is often hurting for volunteers but at the same time do I want someone watching my children who doesn't feel called to do so? Also, is this a wise move on the part of the church? What are you opinions?
     
  2. Revmitchell

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    Yes it is:thumbs:
     
  3. dcorbett

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    You have a valid point...for instance, some of our best musicians
    have children, and they are very busy in the music ministry....
    it would hurt the music ministry if they HAD to participate in
    the children's ministry.


    Just my two cents.
     
  4. Luke2427

    Luke2427
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    "feel called" is where you lost me.

    What does that mean? Where do you get that idea from?
     
  5. Jereynolds

    Jereynolds
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    Are we not called into different ministries depending on the gifts that God gave us?
     
  6. HeirofSalvation

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    While I would not agree with a policy which requires that they work specifically in Children's Ministry, because of possessing talents best used elsewhere and what-not...I truly like the idea of requiring people to serve in order to be served...Church members, are simply rarely the co-labourers they are supposed to be, and are rather the proverbial "bumps" which sit upon those logs we call "pews". Such "members" are of no value. They are, in fact, more a hindrance to the cause than a help. People need to be required to begin to serve in the Church. Baby Christians, may be better served to be allowed to be bottle-fed for a while, but they need to be made to grow up eventually. Truth is, I think most people remain "baby" Christians because they do not serve.

    It is a vicious cycle...people who refuse to serve never grow- people who do not grow are never required to serve.
     
  7. Jereynolds

    Jereynolds
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    :thumbsup::thumbsup:
     
  8. saturneptune

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    Well, the immediate answer is that it is up to the particular local church since we are all autonomous. My personal opinion is that it is one of the worst ideas I have ever heard, based on experience at my church. We have a ministry to pick up children on Wednesday night from trailor courts whose parents are either drunk, on drugs, in jail, or have rotating bed partners. These kids get a couple of hours of Christian influence a week and the only stability and hope in their lives. On visitation days, we try reaching out to the parents, without much luck. This is my point. Any policy that limits, excludes, or discourages any inclusion in an effort to reach others for Jesus Christ is an outrage. It is not the children's fault. What if we made a rule to not pick up the kids unless the parents attended church? That makes no sense. The link between the parent and child has nothing to do with serving the child.
     
  9. Scarlett O.

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    Does this mean that the children have a different Sunday School teacher every week? Wow, I don't think that's healthy.

    Have all of these parents undergone a background check?

    I could understand if the children had the same teacher every week and the parents took turns being an assistant.

    And also, not all adults have the proclivity to work with small children in an effective way. Why force them to do this? Why say that the children can't attend if they don't?
     
  10. webdog

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    Why should one person be the Sunday school teacher every week? We have 4 "leaders" that rotate each month with other volunteers who assist. This way each teacher can still attend service, and there is no problems with the kids having more than one teacher...at least in my church. I think it's actually healthy to introduce them to different teaching styles. Some are more hands on, some more visual, some more vocal.

    To answer the OP, if a family in particular has many young children I do feel they should serve in some children's capacity. If not both parents (the musician example already given), at least one should. Some families believe in the quiverfull movement and see Sunday's as free time period away from their kids by dropping them off as soon as the doors open, and the last to pick them up.
     
  11. mont974x4

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    I have seen this in place for nursery aged kids. The families with kids who use the nursery are part of the rotation for staffing the nursery during the main service. It does not have to be the parents, which allows people involved in leading the main service to meet their commitments there. This helps ensure that the nursery workers don't end up missing every sermon/fellowship/worship. It depends on the size of the church but you could end up missing as many as 1 Sunday a month or as few as 1 every 6-8 weeks.

    This works great. I don't like the idea of teachers rotating. Having been a teacher for several years I know how essential it is for there to be familiarity and trust involved in that setting for real discipleship to occur.

    I do think we need to find ways to get people serving, but I don't think it has to be at the church itself. For example, a woman who volunteers 5 days a week at the pre-release center ministering to women transitioning out of jail. Some people complain that she was not involved in serving Sunday morning. I maintained that she was out being "the church" all week, and it was good for her to be ministered to and recharged for the rest of the week. Typically the people complaining about her are ones that don't do anything except show up on Sunday's and believe they "did their time".
     
  12. Scarlett O.

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    I wasn't talking about a rotation system of a few qualified people. That works - I've seen it.

    I was talking about the children never knowing who the teacher will be and some of the teachers being unqualified, untrained, and unwillinging.

     
  13. Tom Butler

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    I'm going to suggest that we need more information about the practices of the church in the OP.

    This is speculation, but I suspect you'll find that the parents were not enlisted as teachers, but as helpers. If nothing else, simply to help ride herd on a room full of antsy kids.

    I also suspect that there are some provisions for those already heavily involved in other aspects of church on Sunday.

    I'd certainly hate to see a Sunday School Teacher jerked from his/her class to do babysitting. That would not be a wise use of gifts and talents.
     
  14. Luke2427

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    Yes. According to the gifts and the doors open to us and closed to us, etc...

    But what most people mean by "feel called" is some tug on the heart to do something which is not biblical and is hurting the church in our culture.

    People say, "I just felt moved...." or "I just felt led...."

    There is no biblical precedent for that and what I think it usually amounts to is either super-spiritual nonsense or a person blaming the Holy Spirit for their own personal desires to start with.

    You see there are MYRIADS of duties the church require of us that we may not want to do. Many people excuse their shirking of their responsibilities to the church by saying, "I don't feel called to do that."

    The first person they deceive by that statement is themselves.
     
  15. mont974x4

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    We need to be fair and understand that many people are, in fact, not called or gifted to do what they get tasked to do in our churches. So we should not be half-cocked to the "it's just an excuse" position when people tell us that. As a pastor, or other church leader, we should know our people well enough to tell whether its an excuse, a request for help, or an honest assessment that indicates we need to make a change.
     
  16. Luke2427

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    Good reasons should be given.

    Someone says, "I will not keep the nursery."

    We want to know WHY.

    If the person responds with "I don't feel called..."

    Then we should conclude that either the person has a good reason and does not know how to articulate it or that that person is masking his shirking of his responsibilities with Christianese (baloney rhetoric flowing from empty super-spiritual gobbly gook).

    Since when did anything you are supposed to do have to do with how you FEEL?

    And this language "feel led" is, in my opinion, an evil in our time. And that's not hyperbole.

    You don't find it in the Bible yet it seems to be the BASIS for many Christians entire decision making process.

    It keeps us from being accountable- from having to give good reasons for why we do what we do and why we don't do what we don't do.

    The Holy Spirit becomes a scape-goat and we saddle him with the responsibility for all of our actions. "He didn't LEAD me to give this Sunday. I prayed about whether or not I should go to that church where my turnip patch is plowed and I just didn't feel LED to that church. Instead I felt LED to this church where I am more comfortable."

    No reasons have to be given- all we have to do is say "I felt led..." or "I didn't feel called..."
     
  17. Revmitchell

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    No one has a right to receive that service. Many churches all over the country use this policy. And if you do not want to pull duty then don't use the nursery.
     
  18. HAMel

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    There is a local Baptist church in my area that has implemented a policy that if you have children that participate in the childcare during church service then the parents have to serve in a childrens class atleast once a month or their children will not be able to attend.

    Could the above be changed to read...,

    "There is a local Baptist church in my area that has implemented a policy that if you attend and participate in the church service then you have to serve in the pulpit at least once during the absence of the pastor.
     
  19. abcgrad94

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    Wrong. Completely wrong, Luke.

    We don't NEED to know WHY. That is between them and God, it's not our job to judge or try to "force" people to do anything. It's the Holy Spirit's job to move and convict, not man's job. How dare any pastor set himself up as the Holy Spirit, telling people when and where and how they MUST serve! It's not our place to demand reasons and then judge whether those reasons are acceptable or not. Forcing people to serve in areas where they are not gifted/called or before they are spiritually ready can result in disaster. A TRUE man of God would approach the church member and gently ask him/her to pray and seek God's wisdom about where to serve. A TRUE man of God will preach the whole gospel (including the parts about spiritual gifts) and will trust the Holy Spirit to convict and move in hearts.

    The Bible tells us to serve the Lord with GLADNESS. People who are forced to serve in a certain capacity will do so with resentment, and the children will pick up on it. I sure don't want my kids being taught by someone who isn't willing or ready yet to teach!
     
  20. Berean

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    Thisd is definitely a bad idea without background checks.
     

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