As a big football fan, I love Fall when the NFL finally kicks off (go Chargers!). Not only do I enjoy watching the games, but I love the excitement, anticipation and, yes, wondering how my fantasy football teams will fare.
Weekends are “game time” for those of us in ministry, too. It’s when most of our planning, preparation & potential all come together, not to mention all the people we serve. It comes around … every week! Only ours happens week in and week out throughoutthe year, not just for a 16 game schedule.
The players who take the field in the NFL or college have prepared diligently. They study, plan, work out and prepare for each weekend for a very long time. Coaches put in long, long hours in order to be ready for any situation.
Some teams will look prepared and polished. Some teams will be laughably inept (um…would that include my Chargers?).
Unfortunately, on a week to week basis, this is true of our ministries, as well. Some are prepared for anything, week in and week out.
Some are consistently chaotic.
What is the difference? How do we ensure that we maximize our weekends for effective ministry? Here are a few ideas:
3 Ways To Get the Most Out of Weekend Services In Your Children’s Ministry
1. Start with the end in mind.
- What are you trying to accomplish?
- What does a “win” look like? (Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a scoreboard like the NFL so we could know exactly where we stood at any given time?!)
- What are the “tasks” that need to be accomplished to produce that “win”?
2. End with the beginning in mind.
- We do what we do because Jesus did what He did on the cross.
- I believe all of our efforts need to lead to the cross…the beginning of our faith.
- Is what happens in your ministry leading kids to the cross? Are they hearing the Gospel leading to salvation, and are they understanding what the Gospel means in their lives for everyday living?
3. Serve with the Spirit in mind.
- Nothing done in our own strength means anything. Yet I’m convinced that much of what we do in ministry is attempted in our own strength.
- Our ministry ought to flow from our relationship with God, which should be happening on a daily basis. The football players we watch today aren’t just showing up for game time…they’ve invested countless hours in preparation. Why should we expect to show up to “serve” on Sunday without making any spiritual investment every other day of the week? This applies to our staff & volunteer teams, as well.
- With all of our preparation & planning, we need to understand that “game time adjustments” are important. Being sensitive to the work of the Spirit – and be willing to adjust accordingly – while our ministries are unfolding is absolutely critical to truly serving those in our care.