How will 2017 be different in Kids Ministry?
CHANGE CHANGE CHANGE…..
2016has brought many changes in the world of “kids ministry.” What are some of those changes? Here are a few that I’ve noticed:
- More options than ever: There are more options for curriculum, music, media than ever before.
- There are more ministry tools such as; volunteer organization tools, presentation software, Communication tools, etc.
- Training opportunities: There are now more conferences, webinars, podcasts, blogs than there as ever been.
- Networking: There are now more Facebook groups and online networking opportunities than ever before.
So what are the benefits of all these changes?
Well, people are better equipped than ever to serve, outreach, lead, and train than we’ve ever been. With all these amazing tools and resources we should be seeing full ministry teams, full or growing churches, and the standards of excellence should be at the highest levels. There should be no shortages of volunteers, Creativity should be overflowing and we should see the tools and training being maximized.
We know that’s not the reality at least for some of us…
I only wished that our teams were all serving at high capacities and there were not gaps on our volunteer teams or even better we had a waiting list of people to serve. I know for many leaders, they struggle with feeling equipped enough to lead leaders or recruit high-level volunteers. I know many leaders feel disconnected from their church body and from others in ministry despite being in 5-10 Facebook groups. Maybe You are overwhelmed with the conference choice and the expense of attending even one of them. You are tired of the webinars that only promote the “limited time offer of joining a new and improved training.” You are asking how can I reach more kids and improve my leadership skills without getting a second mortgage or get fired from my ministry position or quitting my day job?
So what will change in 2017??
Did you identify with any of those realities? I’m sorry if this sounded really pesimistic or harsh but as I’ve talked with many leaders in Kidmin both paid and unpaid, I’ve heard them. Many are frustrated, alone, disconnected, or burning out. They are tired of the commerciaism that has crept into kids ministry and into our churches. Many of us got into ministry to reach people and to help others reach people. We didn’t get into it to make a name for ourselves or get rich. We only want to hear “Well Done” from our Savior Jesus.
As I reflect on 2016, here is what I hope wil change in 2017:
- We in ministry, will make a commitement to get back to leading people to Jesus as our hightest priority. we often put more time into organizing and decorating than we do sharing Jesus with people. We need to get outside the walls and into peoples lives.
- We will put more energy into equipping people to do the work of the ministry (making disciples) than se do creating pretty enviroments or flashy graphics or presentations. I want to challenge myself and others to personally disciple at least one person this year. (Not ministry training, actually showing someone how to live in Christ.)
- That we will see more coming together instead of creating more groups that are really dividing our community. I don’t believe adding more conferences is the answer, what I’d and many others would love to see is making the ones we have better. We don’t need more competition for our ministry $$ How about giving away your training instead of charging for it? (yes I understand a “man is worthy of his wages” and you need to provide for your family. But it seems some in our Kidmin world just can’t stop marketing themseleves or their next product.
- If you join a group online, interact, contribute, share! Don’t just join a group to add another to your list. If you want to be a part of a group make it better. I personally lead the Kids Ministry Collective FB group and its frustating how many are in the group and yet the interaction is by a minority. The Kidmin community is rich with knowledge and talent and not just by those who write books, work for publishers, or get the invites to speak on the main stage of conferences.
So my prayer for 2017 in the Kids Ministry world is to make it better. I’m going to be more disciplineds about writing, podcasting and sharing what I can to make the Kidmin community better. I’m going to be offering some opportunities to coach those just starting out in ministry or walk along side those who are discouraged and considering stepping away. I want to make the Kidmin community better in 2017.
I want to hear about so many more children coming to Jesus in 2017, I want to hear about those who thought they coudn’t lead, making an impact in their churches and communities. I want those who have influence to use it to make the kidmin community even better at what we do.
Let us glorify God so that when the world sees us, they will have no choice but to turn their hearts to Jesus.