- One big area is when it comes to getting people to volunteer. Whenever we use guilt to get them to "sign up", we are manipulating them and are "blowing" our Children's Ministry.
- Whenever we "gain consensus" by making people feel like they are doing or thinking something wrong if they do not agree with us. When we do this, we are manipulating them and are "blowing" our Children's Ministry.
- When we "label" someone and "share" our "label" with others, we are actually manipulating people in one of the worst ways by preventing and destroying relationships as the ones we "share" our "label" with see this other person in an incorrect way. This is manipulating others and is a way to "blow" our Children's Ministry.
- When we try to, "get people on our side" by gossiping about people or situations. When we do this, we are manipulating others and are "blowing" our Children's Ministry.
- When we "manipulate" children into getting "saved" we are absolutely "blowing" our Children's Ministry.
These are just a few ways we manipulate others and "blow" our Children's Ministry. The common thing between all these examples is when we do these things - or things like these - we are destroying trust; which is what manipulating others does.
When it comes to manipulating children into getting saved, remember. The Holy Spirit is the One Who convicts and calls. NOT us. Present the Gospel and allow Him to do His job.
How can we have a "do-over" if we have been guilty of manipulating others? First of all, we need to be honest with ourselves and with others. We need to spend time with God asking Him for forgiveness for the damage we have caused to people and to ministry. Then we need to talk with people and set the record straight. We need to be accountable for manipulating and create an "atmosphere" where we are "called" on it whenever we slip into being manipulative. Do NOT tolerate any form of manipulation.
And the "bonus" when we do not manipulate others? We - and our ministry - will be trusted and children will respond to the prompting and calling of the Spirit! What could be better? What do you do to create an "atmosphere" free of manipulation?