I have offered to take over the children's ministry director (volunteer) position at our church. I figured I might as well do something useful with my Religious Education degree after all!
Yesterday I spent ALL my free time, in between caring for the kids and the house and life in general, searching the internet for cool free stuff for kids. There are some truly amazing resources out there!
And you know what? I LOVED doing it. I felt totally rejuvinated by using some of the skills I acquired years ago. I am totally passionate about age appropriate teaching in church. I really believe our children deserve the best we have to offer them and they are incredibly teachable in their younger years. I think most of the time the only reason we don't put more effort into kid's ministry is laziness and selfishness. It DOES take a lot of work. It DOES mean some adults won't get to sit and enjoy church the way they want to.
But really, who is more important? I have been a Christian for years now and I am fully capable of picking up my bible and reading and learning and hearing from Jesus on my own. Most children do not have that capability.
And I am absolutely POSITIVE that kid's are important to Jesus- far more important, in fact, than my comfort on a Sunday morning.
Sermons are not geared toward children.... or shouldn't be anyway. So why do we expect them to listen and understand? Is the main point of church really to teach our kids how to sit and be quiet for an hour while they are bored out of their skull? I think there is plenty of other times to teach children appropriate listening behaviour. Why waste an incredible teaching opportunity by ignoring them on Sunday mornings?
And with the amount of free resources on the internet right now we can't use excuses like "curriculum is too expensive" because it is FREE! Sure it might require a little bit of extra work to find and tweak to our individual situations but it is definitely available.
I know lots of parents say that they teach their kids at home, and I believe that lots do, but I think we can all use some extra help teaching our kids about Jesus. And if we believe that every child is getting adequate God teaching at home we are only lying to ourselves.
Children are part of our congregations. We are called to teach them too. Not just their parents.
Can you tell this is important to me? But I'll quit ranting now and go to church and do a TON of photocopying.