When I first responded, at age 16, to God’s invitation to serve His Kingdom as a Children’s Ministry Volunteer, I had no idea how He would use the passion He was developing in me to see kids become whole-hearted followers of Jesus.
Desires. Passions. Finding Your Sweet Spot.
I always had a desire to teach school but God eventually led me in a different direction to full-time church ministry. More on that on another day…
One of my Aunts, who was a school teacher, inspired me to become a life-long learner. I will share more about her in another blog post later this week. Out of that inspiration came another desire for learning and growth in so many different areas of my life.
I eventually discovered that I easily loved kids who were in Grades Two and Three, ages seven and eight. If I had ever taught school I would have focused on Elementary Education. I have often wondered if that was because they so easily loved me back, and were engaged fully in all that was offered. I also wondered what that indicated about my character as I found it easy to love those who loved me…
Openness to a Change of Direction.
As I loved and served the kids in the Elementary age group, watching them develop into Preteens, I began to realize the potential planted deeply within them to become followers of Jesus who could influence and change their world. God began to grow a love in my heart for this age group.
Their deep questions about God fascinated me.
Their enthusiasm about serving others and not just themselves showed me that we, as Children”s Ministry workers, had an opportunity to teach them that living God’s way, mapped out for us in the Bible, is possible throughout all of life.
Their choices now, at ten and eleven years old, would affect their future as teens and young adults.
This ministry to kids ages ten and eleven, Grades Five and Six in our school system, evolved over the years with an emphasis on Jesus’ example in growing up.
We developed a two-year curriculum that revolved around these verses from the Book of Luke in the New Testament in the Bible. It was called Team 2:52, partly patterned after a series of resources written and developed by Rick Osborne.
Our desire for the Preteens was that they would grow in all areas of their life, just as Jesus did. They learned that they could intentionally develop life-skills that would enable them to grow in the areas of:
Wisdom = mental/emotional = SMARTER
Stature = physical = STRONGER
Favor with God = spiritual = DEEPER
Favor with men = social = COOLER
Luke 2:52 says, “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man.
My ESV Study Bible notes explain that:
Jesus experienced physical and intellectual growth as any ordinary human child would, but he also experienced “the favor of God” in his everyday life in an unusual and increasing measure. His true humanity is seen in his learning as other human beings learn.
And Another Change of Focus With the Same Basic Message.
As God developed this desire in my heart for the Preteens, so He has now transferred that passion to focus on our lives as women.
How do we choose to live in intention?
How do we learn to grow in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man?
Come and walk with us as we explore this together.
Let’s read Proverbs Chapter One this week.
Ask God to open up your heart to be teachable as you possibly BEGIN to seek Him and His plans for you more deeply.