When I first began teaching in children’s ministry, I didn’t place much significance on the preschool years. In fact, I tended to look upon this time mainly in terms of “baby-sitting” while the parents were in the worship service or Sunday school. That is why I am so thankful for people like Connie Oman who cast a big, God-centered, Christ-exalting vision and philosophy for the preschool years.
Parents and Teachers: Here are some great quotes to read and discuss with the young adults in your life:
Be careful young people that you don’t postpone the burden and blessing of fruitfulness in your life because you use the excuse, “I am only a youth.” God said to Jeremiah, “Do not say, ‘I am only a youth’; for to all to whom I send you, you shall go.” There are some younger than you that you can lead, and there are some older than you that you can serve. But do not say, “I am only a youth,” as though the only thing you are good for is watching videos and playing games, as though there in no ministry for you to do. (more…)
***This contest is now closed. Heather T was our winner. Thanks to everyone for participating!***
Do you want students to memorize more Scripture in the coming year? Do you want to help them learn key spiritual truths? You can encourage this through song. To this end, Children Desiring God is happy to provide a helpful resource by Necia Sneed Ramsey, Let the Little Children Sing! (more…)
Have you ever heard a child say something like, But it’s only a little sin. It doesn’t matter that much.? (more…)
Have you ever been frustrated as a teacher that your students don’t seem to be “getting it”? Does it ever feel as if the biblical truths you are teaching aren’t sinking in to their hearts? How do we help children apply what they are reading in the Bible to their own lives? This last question was the main focus of Sally Michael’s seminar, “Reaching the Heart: The Importance of Application.” Her summary of the “Five Levels of Learning,” as described in Lawrence Richards’ book, Creative Bible Teaching provides a helpful precursor in both a biblical foundation and the practical “how to” of application. (more…)
Sometimes at Children Desiring God we are asked why we repeatedly present the concept of sin, even in our preschool curriculum. Or, when presenting it to young children, why do we define sin in such “dark” terms? Shouldn’t we be more concerned about encouraging and protecting a child’s self-esteem at this age? While it is true that we must be careful in our tone and demeanor when teaching children about weighty things (i.e., not overly morbid, frightful, or humiliating), that does not mean we should avoid teaching difficult truths such as the truth of their own sin. Furthermore, how we define these truths must be accurate if we are to build in them a right thinking, understanding, and desired response to these truths—”I am a desperate sinner. I need a great Savior. I need Jesus!”
Attention All Children’s Ministry Leaders:
Looking for some training resources as you prepare your teachers and volunteers for the coming school year? Here is a helpful resource you can pass on to your ministry team: Pastor David and Sally’s seminar “Faith Comes by Hearing the Word of God,” in which they talked about the necessity of “Bible-saturation” as we minister to children and youth. They put forth four basic principles that are crucial for accomplishing this.
1. Use the Bible in Teaching. We need to consider the place the Bible—the book itself—has in our homes, in the church, and in the children’s ministries of the church.
Children can be challenged to:
- Read the text.
- Think about the text.
- Answer questions about the text.
- Discover the truth of the Bible.
2. Teach the Whole Counsel of God. Children need to see all aspects of the character of God so they worship the one true God.
- A story-based Bible chronology emphasizing key biblical truths.
- Biblical theology—the main “storyline” of the Bible, in which God progressively reveals His redemptive purposes, which come to their complete fulfillment in the Person and work of Jesus.
- Systematic theology—providing the foundational doctrines of the Christian faith.
- Moral instruction—the commands of Scripture, which communicate ethical instruction, guiding us in the righteous ways of God.
- An explicit presentation of the Gospel—the essential truths of the Gospel leading to an understanding of saving faith.
- Bible study skills—instruction in studying Scripture through the use of inductive Bible study skills.
3. Teach True Doctrine. We have a great God, but often children’s materials bring Him down to man’s level. Teach big, deep truths to grow big, deep faith.
4. Inspire Children to Memorize the Bible. What is memorized in childhood is often retained for a lifetime!
***This resource is now available!***
We are pleased to announce that the revised version of My Purpose Will Stand will be available in mid-July.
My Purpose Will Stand:
A Study for Children on the Providence of God
Target Grade: 6th Grade
Grade Range: 5th Grade – 6th Grade
English Standard Version
God is present and active in the world, orchestrating all things to serve His eternal purposes. All His purposes are good and right, and are accomplished with perfection. As the Sovereign Creator of the world (and everything in it!) God has the right, power, wisdom, and righteousness to rule the universe.
The goal of My Purpose Will Stand is to so reveal God and His glorious work of providence that through the Holy Spirit’s work in the teaching of His Word, students would respond to God in faith as they look for God’s providence in all things—meditating on His works, seeing the big picture of God’s work in the world, and seeing the hand and heart of Jesus in all circumstances of their lives.
Watch our website for more information about products, pricing and upgrades for existing customers. In the meantime, learn more about the revised version:
What’s your plan for the 4th of July? A day at the lake? Grilling brats and burgers in the backyard? A bike ride? Camping? Time with family and friends? Getting caught up on some yard work? And fireworks, especially if you have children? All of these can be great ways to spend your 4th, but it might also be good to consider spending 10 or 15 minutes reminding yourself and your children about God’s great gift to us called “government.” What we in the USA call “Independence Day” should in reality be called “Dependence Day,” as we acknowledge that it is ultimately God who establishes thrones and rulers—or removes them at His will. (more…)