Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Teaching Kids to Worship

Just saw this while Googling to find a new ministry work bag:
"Quiet Sacs" used by young children during worship

For many years, we have had "Children's Quiet Sacs" (also known as "Activity Sacks" or by other names) for children to use during worship. Since Summer 2009 new beautiful cloth bags have been used by these children, thanks to the Quilt Ministry.

These activity bags contain crayons, colored pencils, scratch paper, few short story books, activity sheets for the kids to stay busy and "quiet" during worship.
Originally made by Norma Pence about 10 years ago. Pastor Gary liked them and asked her to make some additional ones a few years ago. Norma purchased the fabric to make them, but moved before she could complete the project, so the fabric was given to Quilt Ministry to complete. In early 2009, there were 20 additional sacks completed and the 6th grade Sunday School class decorated them.
Thank you to both groups for these wonderful additions to our worship ministry!
Just curious...what do you think about this? Personally, I don't like it. One of the best things I've read lately is that "they're disciples in training, not disciples in waiting". How can we expect children to grow into people who love, serve, and worship God if we don't actually teach them how to?

At the start of the summer, I started encouraging daring the kids to participate in worship. In our case, to come up front during the praise and worship service. It has been so amazing to worship with my kiddos! I have a core group of 4 older kids who faithfully come worship and who encourage others to do the same.

Now, I know that we can't expect all kids, especially the younger ones, to know how to truly worship. But they can sing and dance, which are both forms of worship! If we don't encourage them to interact with worship, they get the idea that "church is boring, and I won't understand it, so I shouldn't even try. I'll just color." I believe this is one reason we see teens getting bored during service. They were never taught to enjoy and participate in worship. We need to encourage kids to own their faith! Kids need to know that they can worship, too! The same Holy Spirit that was in the disciples, that's in the pastor, that's in mom and dad, is in our kids! It's not a Junior Holy Spirit. Its the same Spirit. So let's help them learn how to listen to Him!

The only thing that will radically change the hearts and lives of our kids is an encounter with the only true God. By encouraging our kids to worship, we are bringing them to a position to encounter God. It's so much easier to meet God while worshiping than while staring into space in a pew (that's true for kids and adults!).

So let's stop teaching kids that worship is something they can't do. Let's help them develop their faith and their relationship with God. Let's see a generation rise up that is passionate about serving the Lord!

2 comments:

  1. Step by step is what they need in learning.

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    Replies
    1. I agree, but kids tend to learn best by doing. Hear, see, do. When I teach kids about worship, we talk about what worship mean, but we also worship with song and action. With my little ones, I explain worship as using our whole bodies to make God happy, whether than means sharing toys or dancing. As they get older, we incorporate more advanced ideas about what worship means, like taking our focus off ourselves or those around us and placing it solely on the Lord. Kids are capable of understanding more than we give them credit for, so we need to teach them and give them a chance to live out what they learn.

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