Do you ever feel discouraged by the lack of volunteers?
Do you ever get frustrated by the children’s behavior?
Do you ever feel like your children’s ministry isn’t “connected” to what your church is doing?
Do you ever end up wondering why you even serve at all in children’s ministry?
Children’s ministry is a lot of work. There are a lot of details and juggling. And it can be thankless work.
So in order to stay focused and motivated, you need to keep the bigger picture in mind: Children’s ministry is more than education or babysitting. It’s about preparing/discipling our kids to glorify God throughout their whole lives. You’re not just helping Jonny learn to share; you’re teaching him a truth about God that will be relevant for his whole life.
A vision statement can help.
A vision statement is a single sentence description of what you want your kids to be like when they leave your children’s ministry.
A vision is important because it gives all your children’s ministry volunteers something to work towards.
A vision statement…
Unifies volunteers from different programs
A children’s ministry vision statement can help volunteers from all the different programs see how the ministry they are involved in connects with and supports the ministry other volunteers are involved in. VBS volunteers will see how they are connected to Sunday School volunteers. Mid-week clubs will see how they are part of the children’s ministry team. Volunteers from all children’s ministry programs at your church will be unified; working towards the same goal.
Helps you decide what to do with current ministries and potential ministries
If you have a vision statement for your children’s ministry, you have a standard to evaluate all programs by. If any of your current programs don’t help fulfill your vision, then you need to consider letting them go. When considering a new program, evaluate it in light of your vision statement. If it will help you achieve your dream for your kids, then it is a program you should strongly consider. This is a very helpful tool. There are a lot of programs and possibilities out there and it is not possible to use all of them at your church. Having a vision statement will help you as you evaluate possible programs.
Helps you sell children’s ministry to the church leadership and the congregation
Sometimes the congregation will need help in seeing the true value of children’s ministry in your church. A vision statement helps them to see the bigger picture. It will help them to see opportunities to volunteer. It will also show them how to pray for your children and children’s ministry volunteers. It will help the church leadership as they are setting your budget. It will also help the church leadership see the connection between children’s ministry and all of the other ministries in the church.
Motivates volunteers and reminds them why they are serving
When a volunteer feels mired down in details and discipline problems, your vision statement will help them to see beyond the present frustrations. Knowing that there is a bigger picture will motivate your volunteers. A vision statement will remind your volunteers that the goal is discipleship – children who know, love, and serve Jesus.
Vision statement examples
Here’s the vision statement we created at one of the churches I served in, “Kids who passionately love God and live out their faith in words and actions.”
Here are some other vision statements I’ve found from other churches that will you see what vision statements look like.
To equip children to be well-grounded in God’s Word, to build godly character, to instill the priority of the Great Commission, and to develop good spiritual disciplines, all for the Glory of God. (Evangel Bible Church of Berkley)
We want an ever-growing number of children to visit our church, finding a place where they feel loved, come to know Christ, and continue to grow through fun and life-changing experiences.
We want to see every child in our ministry discipled one-on-one by a parent or loving adult before they leave the children’s ministry so that they will know basic doctrine, be practicing the spiritual disciples and have acquired the biblical skills needed to survive the turbulent teenage years and prepare them for a life of loving, obeying and serving God.
With guidance from the Lord, children will be prepared to be strong believers, effective Christian youth, and future church leaders. (Fellowship Baptist Church)
Scripture Versus Vision
Some people may ask why we don’t use a Bible verse for a vision statement.
Children’s ministries should have a verse or passage that inspires them in their work as volunteers. A vision statement, however, is a dream of what you want in the future and it’s specific to your church and to your children. I believe that a vision statement must always be rooted in scripture because the Bible gives us everything we need for godly living. So use your Bible as a guide when creating your vision statement, but remember that a vision statement is very specific to how you want YOUR kids to leave YOUR children’s ministry.
For example, the vision I used for one of the churches I’ve served in was: “Kids who passionately love God and live out their faith in words and actions.”
And, the verse we used to inspire our vision was: “We will not hide these truths from our children but will tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the Lord…So each generation can set its hope anew on God, remembering His glorious miracles and obeying his commands.”(Psalm 78:4&7)
Remember a vision statement is a single-sentence description of the dream you have for the children in your ministry. What will they look like once they leave children’s ministry?
Stay tuned. In the next few blog posts I will teach you how to create a vision for your children’s ministry.