Friday, January 20, 2017

Sunday School - A Place for Relationships

Recently I asked if Sunday school has outlived its usefulness and talked about choosing to focus on involving children in learning God's Word is for them rather than relying on "gimmicks" to get children to participate.

Sunday school has not outlived its usefulness, because at its "core" it is all about building relationships; relationships between children and Jesus and relationships between children and children. We help children build their relationships with Jesus when we focus on helping them learn God's Word is for them and help them learn how to go to God's Word to find the answers they need for their own lives. But along with doing this, we also need to be focused on helping children build relationships with other children. 

Thursday, January 19, 2017

2017 VBS - My Thoughts So Far . . .

At this point in my 2017 VBS reviews, I’ve reviewed seven VBS resources, but I’m still waiting on four more to arrive at my home for review. This means today I do not have another review to post for you, so I thought I’d share a few of my favorites so far and what it is I like the most about these resources.

Please keep in mind, at this point I really like all the VBS resources I’ve reviewed. They are all well written, well developed and have solid Bible learning for children – and the volunteers as well. While it is possible my final Top Pick may change when the other kits arrive, at this point my favorites are . . .

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

VBS 2017 - Abingdon Press - Super God!

Today I'm happy to share with you Super God! from Abingdon Press. As I said last year, while the primary audience for this resource may seem obvious, I want to challenge and encourage you to take a serious look at Super God! whether your church is made up primarily of one race or a mix of different races. I personally believe this would be an excellent resource for any church, as we all need to honestly face prejudices and mis-information in ourselves and deal with them as God wants us to, so we are able to help the children in our ministries grow up to truly believe with all their hearts the song they learned as little ones - "Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world. Red, brown, yellow, black and white, all are precious in His sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world."

In this day and age where racism, anger, mistrust and misinformation divide us - in our communities and sadly, in our churches - more than ever, Super God! is a resource which can help bridge the gaps which divide, by helping us understand others and believe the truth - all children are "super" and all of them have "super-possibilities". Absolutely take a serious look at Super God!and whether you use it for VBS or not, find a place in your ministry where you will use it.

Imagine the Difference & Impact Grandparenting Ministry Would Make on Your Children's Ministry!

If you knew there may be a group of people in your church who were not truly being engaged; what would you do? If you knew it was possible these people were not really being equipped and encouraged to disciple children, who in many cases were part of your Children’s Ministry; what would you do? If you knew it was possible if this group of people were engaged and equipped, they very well might become some of the strongest supporters of your Children’s Ministry; what would you do?

Who are the people in this group, you ask? The answer is; grandparents. Now before you tell me your church has a ministry to and for grandparents, let me ask you if this “ministry” is more than Bible study classes, get-together, luncheons and hymn sings, because there is a significant difference between a “Senior Saints” Ministry and a Grandparenting Ministry. A Senior Saints Ministry primarily functions for those who are retired (over the age of 65) and is mostly focused on fellowship – both excellent things for a church to do, but not a Grandparenting Ministry, which focuses upon those who are grandparents (the average age for a person to become a grandparent for the first time is 47 . . . yes, 47!) and strives to engage, equip and encourage them to pass on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren. Do you see the difference? Does your church truly have a Grandparenting Ministry?

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

VBS 2017 - Hero Central - Cokesbury - I'm Giving a VBS Starter Kit Away!

Today I'm happy to share with you Hero Central from Cokesbury. This is a VBS curriculum filled with resources which will help you engage the children in your ministry with God's Word, science, games, activities, service projects and more. Hero Central is absolutely at the top of my list for 2017 VBS (I'll be announcing my Top Pick after I am able to review all the kits . . . I have a couple more for which I'm waiting) - it is truly excellent and is well worth taking a thorough look at to see if it might be a good "fit" for your ministry -

Monday, January 16, 2017

VBS 2017 - Rome - Group Publishing - I'm Giving a Digital USB Flash Drive Away!

One of the four VBS resources Group Publishing releases each year is one with a Bible-times setting - this year the resource is, Rome - Paul and the Underground Church

With this resource you get to take children and families from your church and community back to Bible times where they may "experience" life in ancient Rome, as they discover what happened with the start of the church, and discover what life was like in the first century Rome.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

VBS 2017 - Group Publishing - Passport Peru - I'm Giving Away One Peru VBS USB Flash Drive!

Today I'm happy to share a VBS I really enjoyed reviewing; Group's Cross Culture VBS . . . Passport to Peru! With this resource you get to take children and families from your church to another culture in a different location somewhere in our world - in this case, Peru - so they may "experience" life in this place and see God in the faces of Christian children from Peru!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

VBS 2017 - Maker Fun Factory - Group Publishing - I'm Giving Away One USB Flash Drive!

Today I'm happy to share with you Group's 2017 VBS; Maker Fun Factory! I love the Fun Factory setting; it looks like it is great fun, but most importantly, has solid Bible teaching and learning!

Friday, January 13, 2017

VBS 2017 - LifeWay - Galactic Starveyors

Today I'm happy to share another of my VBS resources for 2017; this time it is, Galactic Starveyors from LifeWay! Take a look and consider if it is a good "fit" for your Children's Ministry!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

VBS 2017 - Concordia - Mighty Fortress

I am still waiting for some of the 2017 VBS kits to arrive so I can review them, but I do not want to wait any longer to begin releasing my reviews; so today I'm starting with Mighty Fortress from Concordia Publishing House. While I do not know yet which VBS is my Top Pick, I'm quite sure this VBS will at least be in my Top Five for sure - it could end up higher. I'm very happy to see such a well written curriculum, filled with solid Bible learning and the features I look for in a VBS resource!

So let's take a look at Mighty Fortress from Concordia Publishing House where they call upon children to discover how, "In Jesus the Victory is Won!"