Jesus thinks children are important. That means our churches must treat children like they are important. This doesn’t mean we set out to make children the center of church life. However, it does mean we take seriously our responsibility to minister to children and their families. As you think about children in your church, here are four key issues to consider:
- Security. You must do everything in your power to keep children safe. You must be prepared for every contingency. It doesn’t matter if you are a large church or a small church. In today’s world, you must think through issues of security. You need a system for check in, drop off, and pick up. You need a way to secure the children’s department. You need a way to communicate with parents. Security is a big issue, but one you cannot afford to ignore.
- Volunteers. In most churches, the children’s ministry will need more volunteers than any other ministry. Meeting the physical and spiritual needs of babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and children requires an army of volunteers. These workers need to undergo a background check. These workers need to be trained. These workers need to be equipped. But first you need to recruit these workers! Don’t rely on bulletins and newsletters. Talk to people face to face.
- The Bible. Children’s ministry involves a number of things: snacks, play, puzzles, play dough, and crayons. As you engage children with these activities, don’t settle for mere childcare. Children of all ages need to hear the good news about Jesus. Children of all ages need to hear Bible stories. Children of all ages need God’s Word to be applied to their life. Make the Bible the centerpiece of your children’s ministry, and help children see Jesus in every story.
- Parents. Never let parents think of children’s ministry as something that should be left to the “experts.” Children’s ministry must begin at home. This means you have to help parents embrace their God given responsibility as parents. Dads and moms must talk about Jesus with their kiddos, read the Bible with their kiddos, and pray with their kiddos. Children’s ministry at church is far less effective when there is no children’s ministry at home.
Originally published July 21, 2015 on landoncoleman.com.