Friday, April 28, 2017

Generations Quest Launches in Three Days on May 1, 2017!

In three days, on May 1, 2017, Generations Quest will be launched! Today I'm very happy to share with you a "sneak peek" of sorts to let you know what Generations Quest is all about and how it will help the "generations" in your family and church!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Equip the Grandparents in Your Ministry with It Is Impossible to Spoil Grandchildren!

When it comes to being a grandparent, or a church starting and maintaining a Grandparenting Ministry, it is important for us to focus on passing on a heritage of faith and engage, equip and encourage the grandparents in our ministries to do the same. 

The engaging and encouraging parts make "sense" and are not difficult to do, but you may wonder if there are resources you could use and let grandparents know about to equip them. I'm happy to say, "yes!", there are! One is a book I wrote . . . It Is Impossible to Spoil Grandchildren; and Other Important Facts for Grandparents and Parents, Too! In this book, along with sharing some of my "cute-grandson stories", I talk about important things for grandparents to think about and keep in mind as they focus on passing on a heritage of faith to their grandchildren. I talk about -

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Encourage Grandparents to Help Their Grandchildren See Themselves as They Do!

Yesterday I shared a link to a clip from the final session at a grandparenting conference where I spoke last May - today I'm sharing one more clip with you. In this clip I share how our grandchildren will see themselves the way we see them . . . do you see them as gifts from the hand of God, for whom you are ever so thankful?

You will find this clip at the following link - please share it with the grandparents in your ministry!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Help The Grandparents In Your Ministry Pass On Their Faith

Almost a year ago I was the closing speaker at a grandparenting conference outside of Minneapolis, MN. I spoke for the Legacy Coalition about passing faith to our grandchildren and want to share with you a couple "clips" from my presentation - today and tomorrow. 

In this clip I talk about what it means to help our grandchildren learn to watch for and see God's "fingerprints" in their lives. You will find it at this link. Please share this with the grandparents in your ministry.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Generations Quest Official Launch on May 1, 2017

For the past month I've been talking about Generations Quest and today I'm happy to announce our official launch will be on May 1, 2017! Generations Quest is a resource which will allow the generations in your church - grandparents, parents and children of all ages - to connect together as they read the Bible together each day! 

How will this work, you ask? Each day there is a specific verse or two for children, parents and grandparents to read and a question to think about. Then at least twice a month grandparents will connect with their grandchildren - in person, over the phone or using tech - to talk about what they all have been reading and learning. Parents are welcome to do the same as often as they like - even daily at meals, perhaps.

There is one thing which God has promised will accomplish what He has planed for it to accomplish and this one thing is His Word. So, if we are able to get our families to read God's Word, then we will be equipping the children we love to stand against the things in this world which will side-track and derail their lives. Generations Quest will give you them tools they need to do this - no matter the age of their grandchildren or their location.

So, stay tuned! May 1st will be the official launch!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Help Grandparents & Parents Understand and Share What Matters

Everywhere I look I can see one of my favorite flowers blooming . . . this flower is bright, sunny and a lovely shade of yellow . . . and it is known as the Dandelion!

I know. Your reaction is likely similar to my eight-year-old grandson Josiah's reaction. He told me Dandelions are weeds, not flowers, but I told him I still loved them anyway! Within minutes of hearing this conversation, my five-year old grandson Caleb brought me a handful of these yellow flower-weeds!

I am certain I'll be receiving many, many more handfuls of Dandelions throughout the summer!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

God's Gift to Us & A Prayer to Share

Life! The gift God gives us through Jesus' death and resurrection. No longer do we have to try to pay for our sins by keeping a list of rules none of us is truly able to keep. No longer do we have to try to find ways to earn our salvation. God offers it as a gift! His grace changes everything!

This is the essence of the message we as Children's Ministry leaders want the parents and grandparents in our ministries to pass on to the children they love. We know if they accomplish much in their lives, but do not let them know about God's grace which is available because of Jesus' death and resurrection, they will have missed the most important thing of all.

This week as you continue to think about, and thank God for Jesus' resurrection and the life it brings us, encourage the parents and grandparents in your ministry to make time to talk with the children they love - no matter their age - about how God's grace brought them real life!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Connect the Generations & God's Word - No Matter The Ages and Distance!

If you have been reading About the Children's Department for very long, you know passing on a heritage faith to our grandsons, and helping the grandparents/parents in our churches to do the same, is something I care very, very much about. I want my grandsons to grow to be boys, then teens and one day young men who love, know and walk with God, faithfully, with all their heart. I believe the grandparents and parents in your church want the same for the children they love.

This is the reason I am writing a resource I am using with my grandsons . . . and which you - and the grandparents and parents in your ministry - will be able to use with the children you all love, as well! Generations Quest is a tool which will allow you, they, and the generations which follow you all, to connect throughout a month over what matters . . . understanding and living God's Word!

Grandparents, parents and children of all ages - preschool through college age - will all read (or have read to them) one to five verses a day with a simple question to help them think about the verses they read. Families will be able to talk about what they all are reading and learning together

Monday, April 10, 2017

From One Generation to the Next

I have always found a reading of the Old Testament to be exciting . . . and
heartbreaking. You have real people and how their real lives were impacted and changed when they came to know and walk with God; such as David. He went from being a lowly shepherd boy to being the King of Israel. Yes, there were a lot of years between the two, but he knew and walked with God; even as a young teen . . . so much so he was able to trust God to fight for him when facing a giant none of the older soldiers in the army were willing to fight . . . they just ran and hid! He knew, walked with and trusted God to keep him through the years when he was being chased by Saul. Yes, he made some really horrible choices over the years, but when faced with his sin he turned from it and asked God for forgiveness and grace. He wrote the Psalms and modeled for us, even today – how to talk with God as well as how to worship and praise Him!Yet, in spite of the amazing way David knew and walked with God, his children did not follow and share in his love for God. This is the heartbreaking part. If you spend time looking at the kings of Israel and Judah, some followed God and then in a generation or two they turned their backs on God. If you read Psalm 78 you see how over and over the Israelites walked with God and then forgot Him. Something bad happened and they turned back to God and then in a generation or two they forgot Him again.

I find this frightening. I love God! I want to know and walk with Him  I want my children and grandchildren and future generations, should Jesus tarry, to continue to know, love and walk with God. I do not want them to forget Him. It only takes a casual glance at the evening news to know our world is broken because it has forgotten God. It is heartbreaking.

So how can we make a difference? I think part of the answer – because clearly it is not a simple answer – is to look at the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve had everything; and it was perfect! They actually walked physically with God in the cool of the evening, every evening. Yet, they were still deceived. They had to know God loved them and yet they were willing to consider the question Satan asked; was God keeping something good from them? Did God really love them? When we doubt God’s love for us we are much more likely to question what He has clearly told us and try to make it “fit” in the “world-view” of the day in which we live. No matter how much Satan tells us doing so will bring us freedom and happiness, the truth is it only brings pain, sorrow, death and brokenness.

When Jesus was tempted by Satan, He chose to hold on to God’s Word. I think this is where the answer is found. We need to hold on to what God has said. We need to equip the grandparents and parents in our ministry so they are able to help their children and grandchildren do this as well. So, what has God said? Clearly a lot of things, but for me I will hold on to the following:

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Engage Grandparents to Show Real Intentional Love - Share, A Prayer for My Grandchildren

As grandma, there isn’t anything more important to me than for my grandsons to grow to be men who know and love Jesus. This world can be a scary place; it seems evil is laughed at, discounted and accepted like it has not been before . . . at least in my lifetime. As I think about the things I want to pray for my grandsons, I think about the things Jesus prayed for His disciples, and for all of us, recorded in John 17.
Jesus prayed His disciples would be protected by the power of God’s name so none of them would be lost He did not ask God to take them out of the world, but to protect them from the evil one, so they – and we – will have unity and the world will believe.
I believe there is good reason to pray these same things for my grandsons; and this is my prayer based on John 17:6-21 . . .

Friday, April 7, 2017

Why Start a Grandparenting Ministry? Because "Now" Matters.

I've been talking about how important a Grandparenting Ministry is for the Children's Ministry, so let's look at how a strong Grandparenting Ministry does this. One of the first things which comes to my mind is . . . a strong Grandparenting Ministry, helps everyone keep the focus where it needs to be . . . helping children and teens know, love and follow Jesus.

How does a strong Grandparenting Ministry do this? Because grandparents know something parents - and younger people do not know. We know how very fast our grandchildren are growing up. We know the time is short. We know it matters what we do today, because we know the time is short . . . before we know it, our grandchildren will be grown up.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Let's Talk Grandparenting Ministry - What Do You Need to Begin???

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absolutely am convinced if we in the church were focused on engaging, equipping and encouraging grandparents to pass on a heritage of faith, we will surely see a very positive impact on the children and families in our ministry.

Think about it for a minute. If the average child in your ministry is only at your church every other week on Sundays (as most are), then this means they are only receiving your programming; your ministry for about three hours a month. Times this by twelve months and you have the average child in your ministry for 36 hours a year. Yes, a YEAR!!!

Monday, April 3, 2017

Get Ready to Make a Difference in the Families in Your Church with Generations Quest!

When you and the grandparents and parents in your ministry look at the world in which we live, do you wonder how the children you love will be able to maneuver around and through the many, “land-mines” which surround them? Do you wonder how they will be able to grow up as children, then teens and eventually adults who love, know and walk with God, when everything around them seems to be focused upon keeping them from doing so? Do you feel concerned when you think about how these children, who you and they love with all your heart, will ever make the choice to turn their backs on the values and temptations of the world and instead make the choice to hold firmly to God?

As a mom and grandma, these are things I’m concerned about for my adult children and grandchildren. I look at the world in which we live and wonder how much it is like the world was in the days of Noah where we read in Genesis 6:5; “The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.

When I watch the evening news I seriously wonder if our world is like Noah’s world. I want my adult children and grandchildren to make the choices Noah made, so when God looks at them He sees people who choose to walk faithfully with Him.

I believe this is possible. And, I believe we, as church leaders, grandparents and parents are able to help equip the children we love, so they are able to make the choice to walk faithfully with God. I believe the “key” is found in God’s Word. Look at what we know to be true about God’s Word . . .