When recently speaking to a church about their opening for a children's minister I presented six foundational issues to guide the ministry. Here they are in abstract form. These themes were drawn from many teachers. They have grown out of my personal struggle to build my ministry on a solid theological foundation. They are not exhaustive or complete. I only pray that they will be helpful to the church and bring glory to God.
- Children’s Ministry must be God-centered: Our aim is that kids will know God, not merely know about God. The Bible is a book about God. He is the main character. All of creation points to his power and love. Only by knowing Him can our children know real joy.
- Children have value to God: As parents we cherish our children and desire the best for them. But our parental love does not compare to the love that God has for children. We are excited to join in God’s plans to bless our children.
- Children’s Ministry begins at home: The great commission starts at home. God has commissioned parents to raise children who love him. The most effective context for teaching children is the home. This ministry must encourage and equip parents to fulfill God’s design.
- Bible teaching must aim to change the heart: We must not only teach our children truth. We must train their hearts to love God and others. The Pharisees had an outward religion. But the gospel calls us to an inward change that produces love from the heart.
- Children’s ministry must be taken seriously: Simply having “something” for the children is not enough. God has given a unique opportunity for discipleship in the “teachable years” of childhood. Jesus said, “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me, receives not me but him who sent me.” (Mark 9:37)
- Children’s ministry must be age-appropriate: This ministry will be sensitive to the developmental stages of childhood. Every effort will be made to accommodate the maturity levels present. Bible truths will be taught in words that children can understand. We will look at the long term and realize that the fruits of this ministry are seen over a lifetime.