Saturday, July 12, 2008

Pondering missional #3: Missional Kids

Missional could that look like? I think there are past posts about this - maybe under "justice":

Children participating in the same activities their parents do, as appropriate.

giving, serving, loving friends, family, neighbors as opportunities present themselves

participating in well-supervised activities they're interested in (sports, clubs, band...) that aren't church related with or without friends from church

inviting families and friends over

raising money for causes, giving (and delivering) material donations

giving away things they don't want or need

creating websites, artwork, essays about issues that matter to them (there are magazines that publish the work of children

field trips or speakers to learn more about history and the world around them to become more aware of social issues

writing letters

visiting people they know who can't get out and friends who are sick or in the hospital (as appropriate)

volunteering with parents

for teenagers, at one point our city had a separate teen court where kids were judged by their peers. Not sure if it's still happening. peer mediation

hanging out at your local rec center

community service

befriending new refugees in your community

Add more to this list if you like.

Many will look and say but this isn't new. And they're probably right. All these things were happening all along but there were activities associated with church and activities not associated with church as opposed to the thinking that all that we do we do to the glory of God. We work and play in His presence, with His blessing. He walks and talks with us along the way. He teaches us along the way as we walk through our day to day activities. There are "new" terms for this but I can't recall what they are at this moment . . . I'm getting old.

An alternative to planning church group service activities might be creating a bulletin board or booklets or photo albums of the things we do away from church affirming that these activities are a legitimate expression of our faith- activities for home or church. These are people we love - not because we're targetting them for salvation. What? God only loves us so He can get us saved? Is that all there is?For some of us that means being born into a whole new kingdom, a whole new life. Transformation. But is that the only reason God loves us?

He made us. He made each of us unique. He loves us with all our quirks. I want to believe He loves the world that way too, each of us a special person to love. To my way of thinking, this is the world that God loves. Eternal life is to know God. To be saved/safe is to walk with God.

And I'm a firm believer that the things that are supposed to be left-hand activities, activities that the right hand doesn't know about, should remain so - the things done in secret that God rewards, not people. But use the word "secret" and parents and kids may conjure up the bad implications of the word "secret." A whole different discussion. Language again. Have fun with that.

But when it comes to children in emerging churches, how is "missional" different from what the church has always known?


  1. "Missional Kids
    I just read a great list here on ways that kids can live out their mission and beautify those around them. Go check it out!"

  2. Thanks, Carla! You guys are all checking out Carla's blog, right?!