By now most of you are well aware that Lord willing, in just a few days – 23 TO BE EXACT!! – we will be breaking ground for a brand new, 75,000 sq. ft. facility just for kids! This massive expansion project will enable us to reach more children and preteens than at any other time in our church’s history. It will also require us to elevate our game.
Even though we have yet to turn the first shovel of dirt, we are hard at work putting together the plans, praying about and strategizing for all the new people we will need to join our team and help us be ready to minister to all the kids God will bring here.
Here at Crossroads we are committed to continuous improvement in all our ministries. We never believe we have all the answers, have learned all we need to learn, know all we need to know, have tried all we need to try, or have accomplished all we need to accomplish. That is especially true as we consider all the opportunities God is giving us in our ministry to children and preteens.
Last week I met with our current children’s ministry staff and shared with them THE SEVEN MUSTS FOR MINISTRY. This has specific application to our children’s/preteen ministries, but has application for all of our ministries. Here are Seven Things we must have in our children’s ministry:
(1) ENERGY & ENTHUSIASM (Not just verbal, but physical and environmental.)
• Everything we do has to exude energy and enthusiasm.
• If we look worn out and bored to death, kids will leave worn out and bored to death.
(2) A STRATEGIC PLAN (We don’t want anyone saying, “This looks like babysitting.”)
• We want people to know we have a well thought out, well defined strategy and plan to reach, teach, disciple, train and send kids.
• This includes staffing for excellence and strategizing for life change, not just watching kids or giving them something to do on Sundays.
(3) CONTENT (We want the Bible taught.)
• We should be teaching the basics of the Bible so kids have a firm grasp of the Bible when they leave the children’s ministry.
• We should be teaching basic Christian conduct and behavioral skills.
• We need to have a detailed plan of what we are teaching, when we are teaching it, and creative ways to keep it fresh week after week.
(4) DISCIPLINE (We must maintain discipline in every thing we do: big events and small group settings, etc.)
• We want kids to PLAY hard and enjoy that. But we also want them to LISTEN & LEARN and enjoy that, too.
• We’ll have lots of fun in our children’s ministry. But we also want them to know “this is serious stuff” when it’s teaching/application time.
(5) ORGANIZED (We want people saying, “These people really know what they’re doing.”)
• We don’t want anyone saying we don’t have our act together or that we wait until the last minute to get things done.
• We want to be the ministry others come to in order to find out how they can minister more effectively.
(6) FIRST CLASS (We want everything done with excellence.)
• God and our children/preteens deserve the absolute best we are capable of doing - no matter what we are doing.
• Not “old school” or “the way it was done in the 70s.”
• The smartphone generation is smart enough to know when you’re “phoning it in.”
(7) CREATIVE (We don’t want “canned” programs, “church-in-a-box,” or whatever you want to call it.)
• We want to be the innovators and creative leaders.
• We don’t just want to keep kids’ attention when they’re here. We want them telling their parents, “I have to be there! I can’t miss this!”
• We want other people saying, “We’ve got to go talk to those people and learn from them ...”
• We want people seeing what we’re doing and saying, “Wow! That’s a great idea!”
In short, we want to have the very best children’s/preteen ministry we can possibly have here at Crossroads. To do that, we need your prayers and support. We need your ideas and input. We may even need you to join the team!
Over the years we’ve done a lot of great things for kids. But all of that is nothing, compared to what we’re going to do with God’s help.
... and yours, too!
© 2013. Barry L. Cameron
Barry L. Cameron has been the Senior Pastor of Crossroads since 1992 when the church was averaging 188 in morning worship. Today, more than 8,000 people call Crossroads their church home. Pastor Cameron and his wife, Janis, have three children and two grandsons. He’s the author of the bestseller: The ABCs of Financial Freedom, Contagious Generosity, and The Financial Freedom Workbook. The Cameron family has been completely debt free since November 2001.