Friday, May 22, 2015

Why Not Check Deeper in 4 Children & Enter the Giveaway???

Curriculum is often one of the biggest costs in the average children's ministry, so what if you were able to get and use a curriculum which helped children learn how to open their Bibles, read, understand and discover what God says in their Bibles? What if you are able to get and use a curriculum which helped children learn how to pray Scripture back to God? What if this curriculum was inexpensive - and even free?

Well, along with freeing up dollars which you could use in other ways in your ministry, you would be able to equip children to know, love and walk with God!

This is what you could do with Deeper in 4 Children! So, why not check it out? Why not enter the drawing to win up to two years of curriculum?

Why not?!!!

Check this link for information about Deeper in 4 Children and this link for how to win up to two years of curriculum and this link for how to win up to one year of curriculum. Plus, if your church can not afford to buy Deeper in 4 Children, but you would really like to use it in your ministry (Sundays and/or Wednesdays) email me (lynda@kidzconnection.us) and I'll give it to you for free!

Equip Grandparents to Pass on a Heritage of Faith: Pay Attention & Remember Their Blessings are from God

We have been looking at how grandparents are part of God's plan to pass on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren, and how the children's ministry can help them focus on doing so. Today I want to think about what it means when Deuteronomy 6 says - 
Be careful that you do not forget  the Lord.
Apparently the people of Israel had trouble with remembering all the things God did for them; how He saved them, led them and provided for them. Over and over they forgot. We tend to do the same. We think the things we have are because of what we have done instead of remembering all we have are blessings from the hand of God. We forget God's goodness, but He says to be careful we do not forget. He wants us to remember and we need to remember. When it comes to grandparents passing on a heritage of faith, is an important part of them doing so, because if they do not remember God and His many blessings, their grandchildren are unlikely to do it.  

Psalm 78 tells how this happened with God's people over and over. They received blessings from God, parents and grandparents thanked God. Then, they forgot to tell their children and grandchildren and they slipped away from God and into sin. Bad things happened, they turned back to God, thanked Him for His blessings, then forgot, didn't tell their children and grandchildren and it all happened all over again and again.

If we are serious about equipping and encouraging grandparents so they are better able to pass on a heritage of faith, we have to help them remember their blessings come from God, teach this to their children and grandchildren, so they can do the same. We can do this in the following ways . . . 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Important Questions About Curriculum & a Sale & Giveaways!

Do the children in your ministries know how to read their Bibles? Or, are their Bibles just something they carry to class with them on Sunday and then leave in their van all week? Do the children in your ministries really know how to pray? Or are their prayers rote, the same "prayers" and powerless? Do the children in your ministries understand how the Bible has some overarching themes which connect the events they learn about it class? Or do they see it as just a book with "stories" about people who are nothing like them? Do the children who do not attend your ministry every week, feel "left out" because the scope and sequence, "hops, skips and jumps" around the Bible - one week touching on Grace, another week on Obedience and then the focus moves to Prayer?

It truly matters what we do with the children in our ministries, so if we do not equip children to understand God's Word is for them, how to really talk with God, give them a solid grasp of what the Bible teaches on Grace, Prayer, Obedience, Walk of Faithfulness and more, they are very likely to miss it. If they, "miss it", they are more likely to join the numbers of people who are walking away from the church.

It matters what we do with children and they can do far more than we think they can! They can open, read and discover what God's Word says! They can pray Scripture! They can understand bit themes like "Grace", "Prayer", "Obedience" and more!

Equip Grandparents to Pass on a Heritage of Faith: Help Them Put God's Word on Their Hearts

We have been looking at how grandparents are part of God's plan to pass on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren, and we need to focus on helping them do so. Today I want to think about what it means when Deuteronomy 6 says to - 
  • Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.
Image result for images for God's Word on our heartsBible times people had little boxes with Scripture inside - they wore these on their foreheads and wrists and a sign on their doors. A very literal following of these verses; which certainly we could put Scripture in our homes on the walls, or even wear jewelry with Scripture on it, but I think this is about really having God's Words in our hearts and directing our lives. God's Word has to be more than things we wear or decorate with; it needs to be on our hearts and lived in our lives and we can help grandparents do it in the following ways . . . 

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Equip Grandparents to Pass on a Heritage of Faith: Help Them Talk About God's Word with Their Grandchildren

As we continue to look at how we can help the grandparent's in our ministry know their job
is not "finished" just because their children are grown, today I want to look at what Deuteronomy 6 is talking about when it says they are to, "talk about God and His Word in their day-in-day-out lives". We need to remind grandparents they are part of God's plan to pass on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren, and we need to encourage, equip and engage them in focusing on doing so. 

Deuteronomy is not talking about just the occasional word to their grandchildren about going to church or praying, but a living of their lives in a way which reflects how important God's Word is because they live it every day. Deuteronomy 6 says to - 
  • Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
This is not talking about a casual, once-in-awhile, once a week focus on God and His Word. No. This is about a day-in-day-out life. God and His Word applies to and impacts every aspect of their lives, so if they are serious about passing on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren, they need to live like this is true; because it is!

This is all about connecting God and His Word with their everyday lives and we can encourage and equip them to do this in the following ways . . . 

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Believe Kids' Edition - A Great Tool For Passing On a Heritage of Faith - I'm Giving One Away!

As I have been saying, the price is far, far too high if we fail to pass on a heritage of faith to the children in our families and ministries. And, while I absolutely am in favor of strong and successful children's ministries, I do believe as a whole, churches have, "put all their eggs in one basket" and this has been unwise. 

I keep referring to Larry Fowler's book, The Question Nobody Asks about Our Children, for a reason. He has pushed away all the rhetoric, all the theory, all the tradition and looked at the simple, bare, basic facts: there are 168 hours in a week and children are at church for one of these hours. (If they attend more than Sunday School, of course the hours increase, but only to as much as four hours, typically.) And, many children only attend church every other week, which means they are there for one hour out of 336 hours. How can we honestly believe this is enough to influence children to know, love and walk with Jesus? Yes, it can have an influence, but in Deuteronomy 6 God says it is more than just a one hour out of 168 to 336 hours "job". It is a day-in-day-out influence which is needed to pass on a heritage of faith, which of course, means this is the primary responsibility - and joy - of parents and grandparents. The price is far, far too high if we do not encourage and equip parents and grandparents, so they are able to pass on this heritage of faith. We have to "move the eggs to a new basket". Yes, we still need effective, engaging and exciting children's ministry, but we must be equipping and encouraging parents and grandparents, too.

One way we can do this is by letting them know abut resources they can use at home with their children/grandchildren. Believe Kids' Edition: Think, Act, Be Like Jesus is one such resource. Please allow me to share it with you.

Equip Grandparents to Pass on a Heritage of Faith: Help Them Impress God's Word on Their Grandchildren

Image result for images for impress God's Word on childrenYes, I absolutely believe churches need to have effective, engaging and exciting ministry to children. I absolutely believe there is great value in doing the same with ministry for families, but I also believe most churches have overlooked a very important, if not vital "avenue" for passing on a heritage of faith to children: grandparents.

I've been writing about how a grandparent's job is not "finished" just because their children are grown. If someone has grandchildren, they still have a very important "job" to do. They absolutely are part of what Deuteronomy 6 is talking about and as such, they are part of God's plan to pass on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren.

I looked at how the church can help grandparents with the first step in doing this; encouraging and equipping them to be people of the Word who have God's Words, "on their hearts". You'll find what I had to say about this at the following link.

Today I want to look at the next step . . . 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Equip Grandparents to Pass on a Heritage of Faith: Help Them Be People of the Word

I've been talking about how grandparents have a very essential role to play in passing on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren, so when we think about family ministry, we need to consider what we are doing to encourage and equip them to do exactly this. Their "job" is not "finished", If they have grandchildren they still have a very important "job" to do. They are part of what Deuteronomy 6 is talking about. They are part of God's plan to pass on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren. Happily, Deuteronomy 6 tells us how they can do exactly this. It begins with . . .

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Encourage and Equip Grandparents to Pass on a Heritage of Faith - How Do We Do This?

Image result for clip art for puzzle piecesAlong with grandparents being a potential group of people who could become involved in a children's ministry, they also are very important parts of "families" and as such, have an essential role to fill in passing on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren. Their "job" is not "finished" just because their children are grown. If they have grandchildren they still have a very important "job" to do. They are part of what Deuteronomy 6 is talking about. They are part of God's plan to pass on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren, so if we are serious about having an effective family ministry, we can not neglect grandparents; we need to find ways to challenge, encourage and equip them to pass on a heritage of faith.

So, how do we do this? 

The Church's Message to Grandparents

Image result for clipart for grandparents at churchIt is extremely possible there is a vastly underutilized group of people in most churches who could truly make a significant difference in children's ministries. Which group is this, you ask? 

Grandparents. While there are some grandparents who get involved with the children's ministry, there are those who have the attitude which says they do not have to serve because they have already, "paid their dues" when their children were young. They think they have already, "done their part" and it is now the turn of the young parents to volunteer in the children's ministry.

While it is certainly a good thing for parents to volunteer, this does not excuse grandparents from doing so. If your church has a deficit of grandparents serving, it is time to have a conversation with them which says; "Okay, grandparents, I get it. It is easy to have the idea, feeling, even belief, you have 'done your part', 'finished your job', 'deserve to step back' or however you want to phrase it, when it comes to taking care of children and serving in the children's ministry. But, while you did raise your children and are older and often have less energy now than you did then, it absolutely is not true you have 'finished' anything, are 'done' with anything or 'deserve a break', or anything like these things because as grandparents, there is something you know and can see more clearly than parents." 

What is it, you ask?