Thursday, March 31, 2022

Challenges in Children's Ministry

Children's Ministry - many times it is a lot of fun . . . you are working with some of the most fun people on Earth - children - so of course it is fun. But, there are times when it may not be as "fun" and how you respond in these moments sincerely matter. What might some of these "not fun" moments look like? Consider the following . . . 

  • Recruiting - most people in Children's Ministry tell me recruiting is the part of Children's Ministry they dread the most. I personally found it to be a lot of fun, I know, when I have said this in training sessions people look at me like I must be crazy, but I firmly believe no one cares more than God if we have the people we need to do everything we need to do in our Children's Ministries. I also firmly believe He has put every person in our church who we need to do everything we need to do. We know who some of these people are - the volunteers who are currently serving. Some of these people do not yet know they are in your church to serve, but they are there and they are gifts from the hand of God - a true treasure. So, if we look at recruiting as "treasure hunting" it will totally change the way we look at recruiting - you may even find it to be a lot of fun! I will write more about recruiting next week, but for now, hold on to the thought you too may end up enjoying recruiting!
  • Evaluating curriculum resources may not be something you look forward to doing, but there are resources out there to help you do this (such as my reviews) and again, if you look at it as finding the resources to help you be most effective this "chore" may become more enjoyable as well.
  • Dealing with unhappy parents/grandparents. This will happen. Not everyone will like or agree with everything you decide to do. This is a fact, but how you respond makes a difference. First of all, just because someone disagrees with or doesn't like what you have decided to do, or teach, it does not mean they do not like you or your church - keep in mind, they may know what they are talking about. Avoid assigning motives or how people feel when you get negative feedback. It is possible to like your church and ministry - even you - and not like a decision you made. And, commit to NEVER gossip. If you receive negative feedback, talk with the person you are hearing from - and do more than just restate your opinion, and then end communication. If someone is giving negative feedback, it is possible God is speaking through them - they may be right. NEVER discount this possibility. You need to listen, truly listen to their concerns and then give them serious consideration. It is possible they see/know something you do not. Don't take it personally. Listen, truly listen. Work to resolve the situation - keep in mind, one email restating your position rarely will do this. And remember, if someone is giving negative feedback it is most likely they truly care about what you are doing/teaching otherwise they would not bother or take the risk of communicating with you. It is a risk for them to speak up - you might ignore them and their concerns, you might dismiss their concerns, you might gossip and leave them looking like people who are just "trouble-makers" - oh yes, it is a risk for them to speak up. Listen, truly listen, and work to make things stronger in your ministry and in your relationships with parents/ grandparents.
These are just three areas where your Children's Ministry might not seem "fun", but all of them are able to be worked out and worked through in ways which make your Children's Ministry stronger - and more fun as well!

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