On a late August Wednesday night at the church where I served as children’s pastor, our pastor gave the children’s department permission to host a Back-to-School service in the main sanctuary, in place of the normal mid-week Bible study.
Our team decorated the platform, sanctuary and lobby in kid-friendly colors and décor, using balloons, streamers and the like.
Five minutes before service, one of my staffers observed a gentleman stepping through our front door and then freezing in his tracks. After looking around at all the décor, he reached for his cell phone, called a friend and said, “Oh, man, they’re not even having Bible study tonight. It’s just a kids’ service. I’ll meet you at Starbucks.” He then whirled around, headed out the door, and was gone.
Why did our friend leave the church that night? Because it was just a kids’ service. I can hear the thoughts going through his mind: “What a complete waste of valuable time! How dare the senior pastor dedicate an entire evening to just the kids!”
What our friend did not realize, however, is the kind of impact a kids’ service can have on a community. What he failed to recognize was the potential that that one service could have on our local church, and how his participation, prayer and support could have played a role.
I guarantee you that in attendance that night were future pastors, future teachers, future community leaders, and future godly men, women, moms and dads! The future pastor of our church may have been sitting on the front row, listening to the preaching. The future choir director may have been on the third row next to her mom, clapping her hands and singing “Friend of God.” And our friend’s future employer may have been on row six, learning the principles of godly living.
Our job as children’s pastors, teachers and leaders is to come alongside the parents in our community and assist them in raising the next generation of influential godly leaders.
And where do the seeds of godly living get planted in a young heart?
At just a kids’ service.
Brent Randall Regnart has served in Children’s Ministry leadership for over 25 years. He is available to conduct a Teacher Training or Children’s Ministry event in your church or district. He and his wife, Rachel, live in Stockton, CA. www.brentrandall.com, firstname.lastname@example.org.