The 2014 Children’s Pastors Conference in Orlando, Florida is just around the corner and I’d love to meet you at the conference. One of my favorite parts of conference season is meeting with you face-to-face and talking about your children’s ministry!
During the conference, be sure and come by our Elevate booth so you can take part in exciting events and giveaways.
If you haven’t signed up for the conference, you can register today using the referral code INCMelevate. E-mail us at email@example.com to let us know if you’re coming to CPC East in Orlando, Florida or CPC West in Ontario, California. We look forward to meeting you and exchanging kidmin ideas with you at CPC 2014!
As a child I remember the “Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar” my family used, where little chocolates and scripture readings sat waiting for me behind little windows that were opened each day. It’s funny how this simple cardboard stand made the joyful anticipation of Christmas even greater while helping me to learn even more about the Christmas story.
Because this is such a fond memory of mine we wanted to recreate that joyful feeling with your children this holiday season too!
Over the next 24 days here is what your children will learn:
Week One: The Light Is Promised The promise of the Christ and the promises of God.
Week Two: The Light Is Revealed God revealing His plan to bring Jesus into the world.
Week Three: The Light Shines Jesus’ birth is announced to the world.
Week Four: The Light Must Be Shared The light of Jesus is to be shared around the world.
As a parent, I encourage you to have a special treat that follows the completion of each Scripture reading and video. Nothing big, just something as simple as a piece of chocolate. It will add to the excitement, and it will make a memory and tradition your child will cherish forever.
Not experiencing the amazing benefits of LeadershipForKids.tv yet? No problem! Sign up today for free and utilize it to make this special lifetime memory with your children. Simply go to Leadershipforkids.tv and begin this special Christmas journey today! You can also download the LeadershipForKids.tv App off iTunes or Google Play for easy access on your phone or tablet.
“You must worship only the Lord your God. He is the one who will rescue you from all your enemies.” 2 Kings 17:39 (NLT)
The Exodus is such an inspiring story that it is known across the entire world, even by those who have no connection to the Christian or Jewish faith. What is interesting, is that many of the details of the story could apply to us in our modern culture. Here is one such example. The Israelites were enslaved by the nation of Egypt. They were laborers, and their sweat and toil was nearly unbearable. Moses came and requested that they would be able to leave and worship God, but Pharaoh responded by impossibly increasing their work schedule and cutting their supplies. It is possible that Pharaoh believed the Israelites would abandon their thoughts of worship with the crushing demands of a new schedule.
This should sound familiar. Think about it. We too are weighed down with impossible schedules and dwindling supplies of time and energy. When we attempt to set aside time for worship, the world looks at us as time wasters, telling us that we are missing out on the important things of life. In response, we become our own taskmasters. We fill our schedules and calendars with every extracurricular activity, every club, every sport, every trip, every concert, every outing. However, we must realize that this type of schedule does not make us free. It makes us slaves. Many believers have allowed their families to become slaves to a schedule that keeps them from making God and His Church the center of their lives as it should be.
One thing that you need to do is set yourself free from the tyrannical forces that want you to give up the ONE day that God asks you to worship each week. Walk away from anyone or anything that pushes you to constantly give up worshiping God at church. If you do, God will walk with you, and I promise that walking with God and worshiping Him will lead you to a new kind of life – just like it did for the people of Israel.
1 Peter 2:17a “Respect everyone, and love your Christian brothers and sisters.” (NLT)
Read 2 Kings 2:19-25.
When is a joke not a joke? How far is too far? When does saying, “I’m just kidding,” become an excuse for saying whatever we want?
It comes down to respect. What happened to Elisha was not a simple case of name-calling. Read 2 Kings 2:25 again. There were at least forty-two boys in this gang, maybe more! Can you imagine being stalked and yelled at by more than forty people? This was a threatening situation that had everything to do with respect. These boys were not just showing disrespect for a balding man, they were showing disrespect for the representative of God. The SAME God that had used this man to save their city from a poisonous water supply!
These boys were showing disrespect to God when they showed disrespect to Elisha and we do the same thing when we disrespect others. In 1 Peter 2:17 we are commanded to respect everyone. Our family. Our friends. Our church leaders. Our employers. Even politicians whom we disagree with. Yes, even the one you are thinking of right now! Everyone.
So regardless of who someone is, what they have done, or if we agree with them, as followers of Christ we should treat all people with respect. Don’t cause God to call out a bear out on you!
Note: This devotional is taken from the Elevate series, Dojo Kids.
1 Peter 4:19 “So if you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to the God who created you, for he will never fail you.” (NLT)
Read Acts 14:8-20.
Before starting any task, most people will decide on some limits. Whether consciously or subconsciously, we decide how many problems we are willing to deal with before we will give up.
“I’ll work until I feel tired. I’m sorry, I didn’t expect it to be so hot today. I need to take a break. Oh, it looks like it’s about to rain, I guess I need to quit working for the day.”
It’s easy to invent excuses the moment something becomes a little bit difficult. However, when it comes to doing what is right, excuses and quitting should be the last thing on our minds. In this Bible Story, Paul had what most would call a legitimate reason for giving up, the people had tried to kill him! But bloody and bruised, Paul got up and went back into the city. He continued telling others about Jesus and no excuse would make him give up. We should have that same attitude. We have the same mission that Paul had: To tell others about Jesus herbal slimming tablets. And we should never choose to give up on that mission.
Read 1 Peter 4:19. What are some things you feel like giving up on as you strive to do what is right? Spend time in prayer this week asking God to help you to endure. Pray for the strength and patience you will need to continue. Put your life into His hands knowing He will never fail you.
Note: This devotional is taken from the Elevate series, Dojo Kids.
Proverbs 17:17 “A friend is always loyal, and a brother is born to help in time of need.” (NLT)
Read 1 Samuel 14.
Making commitments is easy. However, being loyal and keeping those commitments can be much harder than we anticipated. Maybe you get tired, run out of time, or something else comes along that sounds more enjoyable. The important thing to remember during these times is that if we don’t honor our commitments, we will never experience some of the great things God has planned for us. In the story, Jonathan’s armor bear could have refused to go with Jonathan. Two men against an entire Philistine outpost? They wouldn’t even have the element of surprise. The plan sounded foolish and there was no guarantee of success. But the armor bearer had made a commitment to Jonathan and he chose to be loyal. As a result Jonathan and his armor bearer set something in motion that would become an incredible victory of the Israelites over the Philistines.
What victories does God have planned for you? Whether it’s your job, school, family, friendships, or your church, you’ll miss out on those victories if you don’t choose loyalty. A commitment that isn’t honored is useless.
Read Proverbs 17:17. Take a few moments to think about the people and things in your life that you have made commitments to. Spend time in prayer that God will help you to remain loyal by honoring those commitments.
Note: This devotional is taken from the Elevate series, Dojo Kids.
On the curriculum team that I oversee are many talented writers. Each week they write a Devotional around a particular lesson or story in the Bible. At the beginning of every week I will be sharing one of these devotionals with you. I hope they help you and give you the ability to develop your Spiritual Leadership Muscle!
Titus 2: 7 “And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching.” (NLT)
Read Acts 16:1-5, 1 Timothy 1:18, and 2 Timothy 2:2.
Take a few moments to think about some of your best teachers you had growing up. What made them the best? Odds are, they were passionate about the subject matter and they did everything possible to help you learn all you could.
Paul was that kind of teacher. Paul had made it his life’s work to spread the Good News of Jesus everywhere he went. He knew that there was no greater calling and no better way to spend his time. However, Paul also knew that he couldn’t do it alone. He enlisted the help of a young man named Timothy. But Paul didn’t just give Timothy some instructions and then send him on his way. No, Paul spent time showing Timothy how to live the life of a missionary. He taught Timothy how to handle persecution and rejection. He warned Timothy about the dangers he would face. And above all Paul encouraged Timothy. He encouraged Timothy not to give up and to train others as well. Timothy knew what it took to be a good leader because he had a good leader in Paul.
Read Titus 2:7. Are you being a good example to the people who look to you? Does everything you do reflect your seriousness of teaching others about Jesus? Spend time this week thinking about the people you lead or those who look to you as an example. Pray that God will help you to honor that leadership he has given you as you set an example through your words and your actions.
Recently, I had the opportunity to present a message at Fellowship Church entitled They’re Not “Just Kids”. In it I presented the fact that our children are our nation’s and world’s future leaders, and the qualities and values we invest in them now will determine their success in life, and the success of our future.
This message is one that EVERY PERSON who has a child in their life needs to hear! For those of you who work with children within a ministry, or for a living, I hope this encourages you and reminds you again of the importance of what you do. For everyone else, I promise you, it will forever change how you look at children!
Here at Fellowship Church, we are in the midst of an historic expansion as we launch seven new campuses around the world. This expansion will provide an exciting opportunity for some top leaders to get plugged into the life of the FCKids team.
Along with being a top level ministry, we are also on the leading edge of children’s programming with the production of Elevate, our creative children’s curriculum for church and home.
If you are a veteran Children’s Leader, or you want to break into kids ministry at a high level, this opportunity could be just what you are looking for!
In the midst of a war torn nation, children at the Christian Life Ministries Seeta orphanage are learning about the love of God, and learning how to be the leaders God designed them to be!
Many of these Ugandan children have been former child soldiers. While the orphanage is investing in them through food and clothes, shelter and schooling, they need something more — they need character training to develop them into leaders. As the country’s economy slows and HIV rates rise, the need for future leaders is great. According to UNICEF statistics, the percentage of children who attend primary school drops from an average of 82% of the population to 17% attendance in secondary school. Christian Life Ministries (CLM) wants to change that statistic.
Earlier this summer, CLM contacted us at Fellowship Church about the E Leadership Program and how they could use it in Uganda. We sent several lessons with them — Bible lessons on perseverance and encouragement – for the students to watch and experience during their chapel.
Over 800 students heard the stories and all of them received an award poster to keep track of the lessons they learned. This is just the first step of many to invest in the lives of these children. We hope that by partnering with CLM we will help these future leaders rise up and make a difference in their village, in their country, and in their world!
Students experienced the Bible Lessons during chapel.
The teachers worked with them to go through the study questions and cut out the Leadership Badges.
They gave the children their award posters. Several put them up in their homes so their ‘house mom’ could remind them of the lessons and help them continue to be leaders!