Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; His greatness no one can fathom. One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts. (Psalm 145: 3-4)
Throughout the Bible, God's clear mandate was for one generation to share the wonders of his love, mercy, and power with the next generation. And despite turbulent times, God has always preserved a remnant committed to fulfilling that mandate. We prefer to see our humble efforts in fulfillment of God's great faithfulness.
Disciplining is our Ministry our call our life
Jesus Christ is our model.
Children and their families are our passion.
Maturing lives, transformed by the power of the Spirit, are our pursuit.
Obeying and enjoying the will of our Father with our children throughout eternity is our goal.
FIVE THINGS EVERY KID NEEDS
We are convinced that every child ever born has five fundamental spiritual needs. As a result, we orient ourselves toward meeting those basic needs in all that we do. Those needs are:
A Really Big God that you can TRUST no matter what happens. (That's why we always continually introduce and share Him)
Nosy Parents who make it their business to know where their kids are SPIRITUALLY. ( That's why we always welcome you into our midst)
Another Voice who says the same things their PARENTS say. (That's why we seek so many volunteers for small group experiences with kids)
Someone Else who believes what they BELIEVE. (That's why we seek small group interaction that includes belonging, believing and behaving.)
Uncommon Sense to help them make wise CHOICES. (That's why we constantly use the Bible as our source of knowledge and wisdom for children.)
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says (James 1:22)
Therefore, we partner with families to build a spiritual foundation that will, in God's timing, lead each child to know, love, and obey God through Jesus Christ, what we refer to as the Disciple's Path.
THE DISCIPLE'S PATH
The path of the Disciple, of any age, is defined by the fulfillment of The Great Commandment and The Great Commission - both spoken by Jesus.
THE GREAT COMMANDMENT
Matthew 22:37-40 (New International Version)
"37 Jesus replied: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with your entire mind. 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself. 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
WORSHIP: Love the Lord with all your heart
MINISTRY: Love your neighbor as yourself
THE GREAT COMMISSION
Matthew 28: 19-20 (New International Version)
"19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."
EVANGELISM: Go and make disciples
FELLOWSHIP: Baptizing them
DISCIPLESHIP: Teaching them to obey
As such, we seek to instruct, encourage, and help children to:
Know Christ by confessing Jesus as LORD and entering intothe blessings and responsibilities of membership in the Body of Christ - FELLOWSHIP.
Grow in Christ by maturing as believers through the under-standing and use of personal Spiritual Disciplines - DISCIPLESHIP.
Serve Christ by identifying their unique gifts and abilities and employing them in ministry to Others -MINISTRY.
Share Christ by being challenged to understand their life mission and responsibility to reach others -EVANGELISM.
Worship by daily joyful surrender of their minds, their bodies, and their wills to the magnificence God -WORSHIP.
As this path is applied to the children and families entrusted to us, we have identified several key ministry values by which we guide our efforts:
Children are important to God; they matter to God. Therefore, they matter to us and we are committed to their safe, secure, and nurturing care.
We believe that entering into a relationship with Jesus Christ is a process oriented experience, not just an event. The life of the disciple is one of continual growth and maturity.
The Childhood Division is a child-centered, not an adult-centered, ministry. We make key decisions based on their needs informed by sound biblical principles.
Creativity is critical if children are going to be ministered to effectively because they are more responsive to fun ideas, not routine and boring ideas. (Aren't we all?)
It is imperative that adults make the message of Christ relevant to the life of a child now.
It is important for leaders to be relational, not just informational. Discipleship requires personal involvement.
All children need to be accepted, not alienated - regardless of age, maturity, skill, giftedness, physical strength, family situation, race, nationality, or personality. We see each child as a unique blessing from God, not just one in a crowd of many.
Children learn best when we are focused and prepared. Our efforts, programs, and prayers are intended to be integrated and reinforcing while retaining flexibility under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
OUR R.E.A.L COMMITMENT
Therefore, we try to be R.E.A.L. every time we are privileged to work with children and their families. By that we mean the following:
Relational - Because learner-to-learner interaction enhances learning and builds Christian friendships.
Experiential - Because what learners experience through discussion, fun, and action sticks with them up to 9 times longer than what they simply hear or read.
Applicable - Because the aim of Christian Education and Discipleship is to equip learners of all ages to be both hearers and doers of God's Word.
Learner-based - Because learners understand and retain more when the learning process takes into consideration how they learn best.