How churches and families can partner in making disciples

August 13, 2019

“When I get home, I am going to talk to Jesus!” my redheaded preschooler son called out as we pulled out of the church parking lot after another robust Sunday at church. My husband and I glanced at each other. I responded, “Yes, little love, you can talk with Jesus anywhere at anytime.” We smiled because we knew these few words were God’s gift to our family. They represented a partnership between our home and our church — one that we treasure, and one that we cannot parent without.

Busy family units
Hudson Taylor was a 19th century missionary who said, “All of our difficulties are only platforms for the manifestation of His grace, power and love.” Many families that attend church each Sunday are in a season of life that is ruled by a difficulty called perpetual busyness. It’s a season that is burdensome and overwhelming. Busyness can overflow into all areas of family life, and families need ministry leaders to come alongside them in support and encouragement. Therefore, children’s ministry leaders must ask how they can partner with families who are in the grit of busy lives.

Called to encourage
Psalm 78:4 serves as a humbling reminder to those of us leading children in our churches. It reminds us of our calling, “Tell the coming generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, and His might, and the wonders He has done.” What a weighty and joyous gift that we have been given! Children’s ministers hold a great responsibility to partner with parents in this task — the task is marked with the highest stakes imaginable but also the greatest eternal rewards.

Children will spend only an hour or two, at most, in church each week. While the timing may be short, it’s invaluable in the hearts and minds of the kids. Take every opportunity to preach the gospel in every situation. Consider how your team interacts during parent pick-up. Use pick-up time to inform families of what their children learned at church, while encouraging them to keep the conversation moving during the week.

Children’s ministry leaders may have only an hour or two on Sundays, but parents have 167. Ministry leaders should be parents’ greatest encouragers on Sundays and throughout the week as well.

Ministry leaders should be parents’ greatest encouragers on Sundays and throughout the week as well.

Working together
As a ministry leader, you can equip your families for discipleship opportunities that parents might have when they are sitting at home, walking along the road, when they lie down and when they get up.

Ministry can be hard, and there is no perfect recipe. As you pray and ask how God may lead you to overhaul your family discipleship strategy, think about the kids in your ministry as you would an unreached people group. What do they love to listen to? Where do they hang out? Why do they read certain book series? Remind your parents to do what works best, when it works best, and how it works best to lead their kids to Jesus and grow in their relationship with our Savior.

J.C. Ryle once said, “He who has trained his children for heaven, not for earth, for God rather than for man — he is the parent who will be called wise at the last.” Ministry leaders, you are tasked to encourage and equip parents as they strive to train up their children for heaven as they are sitting at home, walking along the road, when they lie down, and when they get up. Do not grow weary!


by Stephanie Jackson  
/  Children’s Minister  /  North Wake Church

8 steps to leading your church back to growth

Church revitalization is both a popular and critical need in North America. That’s one reason I’m glad to be a part of Church Answers and Revitalize Network. Sometimes, however, pastors and church leaders overcomplicate the process of revitalization. Here are some simple steps all...

3 things I would do differently in ministry

I will soon celebrate 40 years in full-time ministry. During the course of my career, I have pastored four churches, one of which was a church plant. I am now in my third interim pastorate, and I continue to serve as a strategy coordinator with the state convention. I have often...

When the kids come back: Navigating new challenges in your children’s ministry

Your church has decided to reopen its children’s ministry for Sunday mornings. With excitement, you dust off curriculum packs and plan for a grand welcome back. Children who have been learning virtually and in person on a limited basis walk in the door and you expect a return to...

The role of pastoral health in church revitalization

The “RevitalizeNC'' podcast is hosted by Terry Long, senior consultant for church revitalization with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. Each episode includes an interview with a leading expert in the field of church revitalization to offer help, hope and...

Whose side are you on?

It’s human nature to divide everything into sides. We take sides in insignificant matters like what toppings to have on our pizza, or whether to drink Coke or Pepsi. (Some here in North Carolina may be a little partial to Pepsi since it was invented in New Bern.) College...

Explainer: EDT transitions, special meetings & more

A special meeting of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina has been called for 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 22, at Calvary Baptist Church in Winston-Salem to elect an individual to serve as the next executive director-treasurer (EDT) of the state convention.The process for...

Top 5 resources for May 2021

Every month, we spotlight five helpful resources for you as you seek to walk closely with the Lord and make disciples. Many of these resources are created by the staff of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSCNC) to help meet the ministry needs of pastors and lay...

Why overcoming negativity is crucial to fruitful ministry

One of the greatest enemies of longevity in ministry is negativity. This disease presents its hideous face in many ways in our personal lives and ministries. Like many other hindrances to our walk with the Lord and our relationships with family, friends and those we lead in our...

[e

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Select Language ^

Share This

Share this with your friends!