The importance of vision in children's ministry

August 9, 2018

Imagine setting off on a ministry trip without thinking about the destination, purpose, lodging, budget or transportation. You might enjoy the ride and see some interesting sights along the way, but chances are that your pastor will not be pleased with your efforts.

Do you sometimes feel like this is how your ministry operates? We can focus on the immediate tasks at hand, like counting construction paper and checking on the quantity of Goldfish, but we neglect to see the big picture. What would happen if your ministry had a God-given vision that guided your decisions, directed your planning and action steps, and motivated volunteers to see Christ’s vision for making disciples in your church and community?

Andy Stanley says vision is, “a clear mental picture of what could be, fueled by the conviction that it should be.” Will Mancini calls vision, “God’s story for your church.”

Do you have a clear picture of God’s story for your church and children’s ministry? What possibilities does He see if your congregation was obedient to His vision?

Oftentimes we forget to look up and see what God desires for our church. The drive for meeting budgets, recruiting volunteers, maintaining attendance numbers and the “tyranny of the urgent” deaden our sense of what could be. The echo of “no” kills our desire to dream. We fail to answer the call to make disciples who make disciples.

A sustaining God-given vision built on prayer can resurrect and restore a sense of purpose for your ministry. Vision answers the question, “What is worth doing today for a greater tomorrow?” It asks, “What does our church do that no one else is doing?” Vision can define your unique ministry and calling.

Vision motivates and challenges us to take risks and reach out beyond the property lines of our building. It releases volunteers to think and serve in new ways. It excites and builds momentum for the long haul and empowers others to join God in the work He is doing in His kingdom.

Vision acts as a filter and a lens for programming decisions. It can help as you gracefully end a ministry that no longer serves a purpose in light of the church’s vision. Goals, objectives, action steps, budgets, schedules, mission projects and discipleship are all affected when a ministry embraces the vision for disciple-making.

The starting point for discovering the vision God has in store for you and your ministry is prayer.

I ask you to give yourself permission to dream and pray for a vision from God. What is God’s story for your ministry, and how will you share this good news with others?

The Israelites were given the vision of taking the Promised Land. They were told that obedience was the key to their success.

Embrace the vision even though it may seem overwhelming in the moment. How will you fulfill Jesus’ vision to “Make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19-20)?

Imagine setting off on a ministry trip without thinking about the destination, purpose, lodging, budget or transportation. You might enjoy the ride and see some interesting sights along the way, but chances are that your pastor will not be pleased with your efforts.

Do you sometimes feel like this is how your ministry operates? We can focus on the immediate tasks at hand, like counting construction paper and checking on the quantity of Goldfish, but we neglect to see the big picture. What would happen if your ministry had a God-given vision that guided your decisions, directed your planning and action steps, and motivated volunteers to see Christ’s vision for making disciples in your church and community?

Andy Stanley says vision is, “a clear mental picture of what could be, fueled by the conviction that it should be.” Will Mancini calls vision, “God’s story for your church.”

Do you have a clear picture of God’s story for your church and children’s ministry? What possibilities does He see if your congregation was obedient to His vision?

Oftentimes we forget to look up and see what God desires for our church. The drive for meeting budgets, recruiting volunteers, maintaining attendance numbers and the “tyranny of the urgent” deaden our sense of what could be. The echo of “no” kills our desire to dream. We fail to answer the call to make disciples who make disciples.

A sustaining God-given vision built on prayer can resurrect and restore a sense of purpose for your ministry. Vision answers the question, “What is worth doing today for a greater tomorrow?” It asks, “What does our church do that no one else is doing?” Vision can define your unique ministry and calling.

Vision motivates and challenges us to take risks and reach out beyond the property lines of our building. It releases volunteers to think and serve in new ways. It excites and builds momentum for the long haul and empowers others to join God in the work He is doing in His kingdom.

Vision acts as a filter and a lens for programming decisions. It can help as you gracefully end a ministry that no longer serves a purpose in light of the church’s vision. Goals, objectives, action steps, budgets, schedules, mission projects and discipleship are all affected when a ministry embraces the vision for disciple-making.

The starting point for discovering the vision God has in store for you and your ministry is prayer.

I ask you to give yourself permission to dream and pray for a vision from God. What is God’s story for your ministry, and how will you share this good news with others?

The Israelites were given the vision of taking the Promised Land. They were told that obedience was the key to their success.

Embrace the vision even though it may seem overwhelming in the moment. How will you fulfill Jesus’ vision to “Make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19-20)?


by Cheryl Markland  
/  Childhood Evangelism and Discipleship  /  Baptist State Convention of North Carolina

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