Things were desperate. We were running out of space.
I had been the children’s pastor at a church for a few years when we developed a very nice problem: our numbers were increasing rapidly, and we were running out of room in the children’s ministry area during our midweek sessions. Kids were pretty much hanging out of the windows and swinging from the lights. We desperately needed more square footage.
I became aware of two classrooms on the church campus that were not being utilized during our ministry time, so I embarked on a mission to secure those rooms for our purposes.
To do so, however, I would have to gain the approval of our church’s Facilities Manager, a leader whose job it was to assign which ministry had access to which room and when.
So I made an appointment to meet with Mr. Facilities Manager. When we met, I made my best case for why my department should be granted permission to use those two rooms.
With folded arms, he listened to my passionate plea, then replied with an answer that still sends a chill down my spine.
He said, “I don’t know why you need all that space on Wednesday nights. After all, all you’re doing in there is just … babysitting.”
I was absolutely stunned.
Apparently he was under the very mistaken notion that the job description of my team was to provide childcare. He had no clue that what we were all about was ministry to kids.
In my years of children’s ministry, I have seen lives changed. I have witnessed kids receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit. I have seen children obtain the faith, hope and love that they needed in their young lives. I have seen children who started out in Sunday school eventually become ministers, missionaries and other influential leaders.
To my friends in children’s ministry: never equate what you do with “babysitting.” You are in the business of impacting lives.
Furthermore, if you are the parent or grandparent of a child who attends children’s ministry in your local church, do not take for granted those dedicated staff members who are working with the kids.
You may think that when you drop off little Daniel at his Sunday school room before you go to adult service that you are dropping him off at childcare. But you could not be more wrong: you have entrusted him into the hands of people who are helping you fulfill your duty of raising a godly child.
Don’t ever let me catch you using the “B-word.” I might have to put you in Time Out.
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. Call or text: (209)601-4315.