There was an awesome story in the book, Help, I’m A Sunday School Teacher by Ray Johnston. It was the 1950’s and a Philadelphia congregation watched three nine-year-old boys get baptized. Tony Compolo was one of those boys. Years later, Compolo decided to look up the church membership reports for his baptism and that year there were only three: his, Dick White and Bert Newman. At the time of the story, Dick was a missionary, Bert taught theology in an African Seminary and of course, Tony Compolo was a world-renowned author, teacher, writer and professor.
Compolo said as he continued on with the report, it read, “It wasn’t a good year for our church, we lost 27 members to death the three that joined the church were only children.”
Only Children? Maybe.
But you add a few years of work, invitation, teaching, correcting, Sunday School and other ministry and kids grow into mature Christian disciples, who eventually lead the church. Of course, as the old saying goes, the kids are the “church of today” but they are the actual leaders tomorrow and it won’t take long.
I have often honored Mrs. Berry in my life – she taught the kids Wednesday night ministry in our church. I really don’t know a ton about her life, but I know she was disciplined to teach us, enthusiastic about Scripture and she was able to effectively lead a large group of kids. She equipped us. And though she has passed away a whole generation of kids and students are still following Jesus today in part because of her foundation and faithfulness.
They say if you are reaching children you are growing someone else’s church. That may be partially true. But thankfully, we’re all on the same team in the Christian Church. And no investment in teaching children the way of Jesus is ever wasted.
Sunday School / Sunday morning kids ministry is still a great way to accomplish some of this maturing work. Do it as well as you can and God will take care of the hearts of kids.
They are only children for now… you are helping raise up adults who will need to know the foundations of faith in Christ.
Here are a few basics:
How to get kids to come on Sundays.
Scripture memory in children’s ministry.
7 Tips for helping kids read scripture.
Ways to keep discipline in kids ministry.
Bring kids to The Light Kids Conference!
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