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What Are the Biggest Challenges Facing the Church?

Children Desiring God Blog // National Conference

What Are the Biggest Challenges Facing the Evangelical Church in 2016?

Children Desiring God Blog // National ConferenceIn a recent Ask Pastor John segment, John Piper shared his thoughts on the biggest challenges facing the evangelical church this year. Here is an excerpt:

…if you start at the beginning, the first and great commandment says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37). So I would think, since that is the first commandment, that is the first challenge in every generation. Does the church and does the world love God with all their heart and all their soul and all their mind and all their strength? …if we don’t know God, we can’t love God.

Our worship to glorify God must be based on what we have seen of God, what we know of God, what he has revealed of himself. If we are just worshiping a haze, God is not getting a lot of glory from the warm feelings that we are having in our hearts because of the ignorance of not being in our heads because of the haze over our lives.

I have got this picture in my head of somebody who runs up to me on the road and says, “Here is $10,000. Please go put it in my bank. Here is my pin number, and here is my account number.” And I say, “I don’t even know you. What are you doing?” He just says, “I trust you.” I say, “Why do you trust me?” He says, “Oh, I don’t know. I feel inside like I should trust you.” My response is not to be honored. I feel like this guy is a nut.

However, if he runs up to me and says, “Here is $10,000 in cash. Please, here is my account number. Here is my pin number. Would you deposit it for me?” And I say, “Look, I don’t even know you. Why do you trust me?” He says, “Oh, I know you. We work in the same building. I have been watching you for a year. You are trustworthy. I will trust you, because I know you.” Then I feel honored.

That is the way it is with God. If we say, “Oh, I am just coming to God. I trust him. I don’t have any reasons for trusting him. I don’t need that theology stuff.” God thinks we are nuts. We are not honoring him. We are honoring a haze. And so knowledge really matters underneath the commandment. You have got to love God with all your heart and soul.

So today I think the biggest challenge is: Do people know God? Do people have a knowledge that is trustworthy? Therefore a huge issue is: What is the role of the Bible in the church today and is it trustworthy and are people basing their lives on it in their preaching on it? Are they getting the whole counsel of God so that they can love the whole God?

What Does this Mean for Children’s Ministry?

We are excited to have Pastor John and others join us to help us explore the topic of teaching the whole counsel of God to the next generations at the Children Desiring God National Conference, April 14-16 in Indianapolis. Our Keynote Sessions will include:

  1. Declaring the Whole Counsel of God to the Next Generation // Mark Vroegop
  2. Exploring the Fullness of the Whole Counsel of God // Bruce Ware
  3. Holding Fast to the Whole Counsel of God Under Pressure to Conform //Albert Mohler
  4. Believing the Whole Counsel of God: How Our Children Can Know the Bible Is True // John Piper
  5. Persevering in the Whole Counsel of God // David Michael

We hope you can join us in learning how to teach the whole counsel of God to the children in your church so they can wholeheartedly love God in response to this knowledge!

Early Bird Registration Closes Sunday January 31

Register by 11:59pm (CST), January 31 to receive Early Bird Pricing!

Children Desiring God Blog // National Conference

 

Last week to save! Register for the National Conference today!

2016 Children Desiring God National Conference

 

Register Now

Early Bird Savings Ends January 31!

Are you brand new to children’s ministry and just trying to figure out how things work? Have you been serving for years and feel burnt out? Do you have specific area of ministry that is not working and need advice on what to do? Are you looking for new ideas for your classrooms? Are looking to build a support network with others in children’s ministry?

The Children Desiring God National Conference is the place for you! We hope you will join us in Indianapolis, April 14-16 to experience:

  • Worship of our unchangeable God
  • Five encouraging plenary sessions led by Albert Mohler, John Piper, Bruce Ware, Mark Vroegop and David Michael. They will explore the meaning of the whole counsel of God and examine the impact to the next generation if we don’t teach this in our children’s ministries.
  • Over 60 practical seminar sessions to fuel fruit-bearing ministry. Topics include teaching with purpose, partnering with parents, training volunteers, teaching youth to study the Bible, discipling children, intergenerational teaching and more.
  • Networking with churches across America and around the world
  • Fellowship and exchange of ideas with ministry workers
  • Refreshment, encouragement and revival

Don’t wait! Register now to save your spot at the lowest price! Early bird pricing ends January 31 at 11:59 pm (CST).

We look forward to seeing you in April!

2016 National Conference

 

 

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

This Christmas, may you and your family worship Jesus, the Savior of the world, the King of Kings, who is most special of all.

Joy to the world! the Lord is come;
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare him room,
And heaven and nature sing,
And heaven and nature sing,
And heaven, and heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the world! the Savior reigns;
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat the sounding joy.

We wish you the merriest Christmas!

David, Sally, Jill, Brian, Terry, Holly, Karen, Betty, Suzy, Nicole, Annie and Rachel

 

 

The Fighter Verses Coloring Contest Winners

Fighter Verses Coloring Contest

Thank you to everyone who entered The Fighter Verses Coloring Book Coloring Contest. It was a joy to see all of your pictures. We pray these verses will be treasured in the hearts of your children not only as they color the images in this book, but for a lifetime. Congratulations to the following winners!

Contest Winner: Elijah

Elijah, 4, Georgia

Contest Winner: Ford

Ford, 5, North Carolina

Contest Winner: Matia

Matia, 7, Illinois

Contest Winner: Brooklyn

Brooklyn, 13, Illinois

Contest Winner: Amanda

Amanda, Winnipeg

Contest Winner: Carol

Carol, New York

Watch for a message from us with more details so we can get your coloring book into the mail!

 

Learn more about The Fighter Verses Coloring Book and The Fighter Verses Study for families, small groups and individuals.

 

Change Coming to the NIV Fighter Verses

Changes Coming to the NIV Fighter Verses

It has been a wonderful privilege to encourage you since 1997 to hide God’s Word in your heart through the Fighter Verse Bible memory program.

On January 1st, 2016, Children Desiring God will update all of the Fighter Verses resources in the New International Version (NIV) from the NIV1984 version to the NIV2011 translation. Due to restrictions from the publisher, we can no longer offer the 1984 NIV version after December 31. We apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause you.

The Fighter Verses App

NIV2011 will replace NIV1984 verses in our Fighter Verses App in the next couple weeks.  This change will show up on your smartphone or tablet the next time you update your app from iTunes or Google Play.

Fighter Verses, Extended Verses and Foundation Verse Packs

You may purchase NIV1984 Fighter Verses, Extended Verses and Foundation Verses packs from our website through December 31, 2015.  Starting January 1, all NIV Fighter Verses resources purchased through our website will be in NIV2011. These NIV1984 resources will be on sale through the end of the year (Limited quantities available).

We know changing or updating translations can be difficult when memorizing. We pray this change will not deter you from the wonderful discipline of Bible memory.  Memorizing the Word is crucial to our fight of faith. Consider just a few amazing realities of God’s Word:

Every Word of God proves trueProv 30:5
God watches over his Word to perform itJer 1:12
God’s Word never returns emptyIs 55:11
God’s Word is truthPs 199:160
God’s Word is sharper than a two-edged swordHeb 4:12
People are saved by God’s WordJam 1:18
People are sanctified by God’s WordJohn 17:17
People have joy through God’s Word
Ps 119:14
God’s Word will remain forever
Is 40:8
The Word became flesh and dwelt among us
John 1:14

At this time, all Children Desiring God NIV curriculum will remain in the 1984 version. Curriculum and Fighter Verses resources in the English Standard Version (ESV) will not be effected by this change.

 

Join us at the 2016 National Conference! Registration is Open!

2016 Children Desiring God National Conference

2016 National ConferenceYou are invited to join us at the 2016 National Conference, April 14-16 in Indianapolis!

It is a special time for pastors, children’s ministry leader, Sunday school teachers, small group leaders/mentors, youth ministry leader and parents to join together for a time of training, refreshment and encouragement.

Plenary Sessions

During our five plenary sessions, Albert Mohler, John Piper, Bruce Ware, Mark Vroegop and David Michael will inspire, educate and encourage you in your personal walk with the Lord as they discuss Persevering in the Whole Counsel of God, What’s at Stake for the Next Generation.

Seminar Sessions

The hands on training in our four seminar sessions provides the perfect complement to the theological training in the plenary sessions. Practical instruction from 29 experienced teachers and leaders in over 60 seminar options will equip you and your ministry team for real-life ministry to children, youth and their parents.

There is a seminar for everyone whether you are brand new to children’s ministry or a veteran teacher, a prayer warrior for babies or a mentor for youth, a children’s ministry leader trying to get church leadership to join you in your vision or for children or a parent trying to figure out how to have your child sit with you in a church service, a volunteer coordinator in a tiny church trying to make resources stretch or in charge or recruiting enough teachers to fill you classrooms in a large church.

We look forward to meeting you in April! Register now to get the early bird special!

 

Register Now2016 National Conference


Have questions? Here’s where you can find the answers:

  • I can’t wait to meet y’all! How do I sign up?: Registration
  • That’s an incredible keynote speaker line up. Can I learn more about them?: Keynote Speakers
  • Will I get bored? Definitely not!: Schedule
  • Are there really seminars for me? Check out your choices: Seminars
  • Are the seminar speakers amazing? Yes, meet them here: Seminar Presenters
  • Indianapolis? How do I get there and where will I stay?: Travel and Lodging
  • I still have more questions: Frequently Asked Questions
  • …And even more questions! Let’s chat: Email us at info@childrendesiringGod.org or give us a call at 877.400.1414.

 

 

Now Available: The Fighter Verses Study!

The Fighter Verses Study

What could be more valuable than teaching families not only to know the Scriptures, but also to linger over them as they discuss and color, and to pray them into reality.” –John Piper, founder and teacher, desiringGod.org

The Fighter Verses Study will help guide you through key Scripture passages and arm you with tools to strengthen your faith in Christ and equip you to fight the fight of faith. The study can be used as a family devotional, small group discussion or personal study. Thought provoking questions throughout each lesson will spur you on to dig deeper into Scripture as you support and encourage one another through the battles of life. The year-long study coordinates with the verses in Set One of the Fighter Verses Bible memory program.

Sample: The Fighter Verses Study, Set One

Scope & Sequence: The Fighter Verses Study, Set One

Order your own copy today!

 

The Fighter Verses Study Resources

THE FIGHTER VERSES DISCUSSION GUIDE

The Fighter Verses Discussion GuideFor Fathers, Small Group Leaders, Teachers, or Individuals

The Discussion Guide includes 52 lessons, each based on a verse or short passage. Lessons include an introduction to the context of the verse and two or three parts looking at different sections of the text. Each part includes questions that will lead you to a better understanding of the verses. These can be answered personally or discussed in a group. At the end of each part are application questions, prayer points, and an encouragement to journal and memorize the verse.

Also available in a 13-week Study.

 

THE FIGHTER VERSES STUDY GUIDE

The Fighter Verses Study GuideFor Study Participants or Individuals

The Study Guide includes the same main content for each of the 52 lessons found in the Discussion Guide. The Study Guide helps participants in a family or small group study ponder and understand each week’s Scripture passage through guided questions which can be answered personally and discussed as a group.

Also available in a 13-week Study.

 

THE FIGHTER VERSES COLORING BOOK

The Fighter Verses Coloring BookFor Children (Ages 2-102)

The Coloring Book gives children of all ages a visual representation of each of the 52 verses along with a key truth statement to focus on. This is a great resource to help younger children engage during a family or group discussion of the study and it encourages them memorize the verse along with the whole family. These original illustrations include a blend of powerful Bible stories brought to life; children in real-life, modern-day moments; and beautiful nature scenes.

Note: The Coloring Book can be used alongside The Fighter Verses Study, by children memorizing Fighter Verses, or by itself as an encouraging, Bible-based coloring resource for children.

THE FIGHTER VERSES JOURNAL

The Fighter Verses JournalTo Record Your Reflections, Insights, and Action Steps

Use the Journal in your personal quiet time with the Lord to reflect on the Fighter Verses and record truths that have made an impact on your life, actions steps you want to take, or how God is using the verses you memorize in your everyday life. The Journal sets aside two pages for each passage and includes the verse written out along with a short paragraph to explain the verse or challenge you as you study.

Note: The Journal can be used as an extension of The Fighter Verses Study or by individuals who are simply memorizing the Fighter Verses and want to incorporate it into their personal study or devotional times.

 

 

Coming Soon: The Fighter Verses Study

Fighter Verses

The Fighter Verses StudyDo you long to have the Word of God engraved on your soul; to be instructed, counseled, and convicted by Scripture; to have your worldview shaped by the Word, and not by the World? Memorizing the Word makes it possible to meditate on the Word, which carries the potential of shaping our thinking and our affections.

The Fighter Verses Study is a year-long devotional for families, small groups, classes and individuals. Each week’s lesson is based on a verse or short passage that will equip you to “fight the fight of faith.” A series of questions, which can be answered personally or discussed in a group, will lead you to a better understanding of the verses. You will be challenged with application questions, inspired by prayer points and encouraged to journal and memorize the passage. Verses line up with Set 1 of the Fighter Verses Bible Memory program.

The Fighter Verses Study will be released in November…stay tuned for more details in the next few weeks!

Learn more about The Fighter Verses Study

View the Study Sample

Read the Scope & Sequence

 

 

Now Available: God’s Gospel

God's Gospel family devotion book on salvation

We often think about what our children will inherit from those who have gone before them.

But what about the one inheritance that will last forever?

Christian parents have already faced the reality of their own sin, helplessness, and need for a Savior. And, though our young children’s lives often seem simpler than ours, their spiritual predicament is every bit as real. They are never too young to hear God’s good news for them as they face eternity–but as a parent, you may be wondering how to explain it to them in a way they can understand.

We are excited to announce the release of our favorite author’s first book. In God’s Gospel, Jill Nelson continues the Making HIM Known family devotional series as she demonstrates that even young children can learn about the gospel in full detail. This full color, illustrated book is perfect for parent to read with 5- to ten-year-old children. God’s Gospel has 26 chapters that are the perfect length for a family devotion time or one-on-one story time. Each chapter also includes several application questions along with an activity suggestion.

As you read through God’s Gospel, you and your children will discover God’s plan of salvation, starting with his very first designs for creation and moving through what went wrong, how important and hopeless our situation truly is, and what the wonderful news of our Savior’s sacrifice means for us.

Don’t just prepare your children for this life–prepare them for the one that matters most!

Take a look inside:

Read the First Chapter

View the Table of Contents

Order you own copy today!

 

You may also be interested God’s Word.

 

Awake My Soul and Praise the Lord

Children Desiring God Blog // Awake My Soul Hymn

Each Monday, the Children Desiring God team gathers together for a time of devotions, hymn singing and prayer for each other and each of you. This week, we sung the hymn, Awake, My Soul, and with the Sun, which Thomas Ken wrote based on the following verses:

Awake, my glory! Awake, O harp and lyre! I will awake the dawn!
Bless the LORD, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name!
Psalm 57:8 & 103:1

Although you may not recognize the title or composer, the eleventh verse is on of the most frequently used pieces of music in public worship…commonly known as the Doxology.

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