The Value of Children's Ministry
Prov. 22:6 - “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
WHY DO WE HAVE CHILDREN’S MINISTRY?
Last fall, I was asked that question. I thought I misunderstood the man who asked me, but no. This man had heard a preacher make the comment, “Children and youth ministries are unscriptural.” He went on to say that the family should be ministered to as one group, seeing there was no mention of children’s ministry in the book of Acts. If we were to use that logic, then we would need to shut down SBN and any other form of outreach not specifically mentioned in the Bible such as ministry to drug addicts or to pregnant teens seeking abortions. Clearly there is an ongoing need for all of these types of ministries and outreaches, but is there a biblical basis for children and youth ministry? Do children, youth, and adults all learn the same way? Is it possible to have an anointed, effective children’s ministry?
TRAIN UP A CHILD
One of the most powerful verses used in children’s ministry is Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” This speaks of a continual, conscious endeavor to educate children about the things of God until it is so much a part of their lives that, as they grow up, they won’t depart from that right path.
“And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. And you shall write them upon the door posts of your house, and upon your gates” (Deut. 11:19-20). As we see from this Scripture, every opportunity should be taken to minister to children: sitting, walking, lying down, and getting up.
It is a proven fact that children learn differently than adults do. This changes during different stages of child development, so why not teach them in ways that they can learn easier? Now I am not against children being part of the main services, of course not. However, sometimes an object lesson, a PowerPoint slide, or a sermon dealing directly with what children or youth are facing might help train them in the way they should grow.
REACH THEM WHILE THEY ARE CHILDREN
Here at Family Worship Center, we believe in children’s ministry. God blessed and moved mightily in our 2014 International Kids Conference, as well as during kids camps where we were invited as guests to minister in Spartanburg, S.C.; Ottawa, Ill.; Palestine, Tex.; and Crosby, Tex. Children’s ministry is important. If we don’t reach them in Salvation Station, and Pastor Gabe doesn’t reach them in Crossfire, then we may find ourselves trying to reach them later on through prison ministry.
WHAT DID JESUS DO?
This generation of kids is under spiritual and moral attack more than any other generation in the history of mankind. They need to know the Message of the Cross. They need to know the power of the completed work of Calvary. They need to be ministered to in an effective way. Jesus rebuked the disciples for hindering parents from bringing their children to Him to be blessed, as if being in the crowd should have been sufficient enough, as some say today. Jesus took time to minister to individual children. He didn’t see them as an interruption to ministry - He saw them as a different part of His ministry. Pastors, won’t you do the same?