Most of what’s below has been adapted from the material put together by the fine people at Orange. Charlene and I love what they’re doing. If you want to know more about Orange, check them out at ThinkOrange.com
I’ve learned in my life that it’s pretty hard to feel like you’re doing something awesome if you don’t know what you want to do. We’re so surrounded by choice in our world that paring it down to what you really want can be hard.
The same goes for ministry. Why do we do what we do at Westheights when it comes to Kids and Students?
Thank goodness – we’re not on our own! We have God and a whole host of awesome people in the world thinking about this too.
Charlene and I have been greatly encouraged by a group of folks at a ministry called Orange, and they’ve helped us finally put into words what we’ve been thinking for years about what family ministry (that is ministry to kids, students and their parents) is all about.
We think it comes down to three powerful words: Wonder, Discover, & Passion.
We think God is both wonder-full and wondrous.
From the miracles of the Bible, to the character of God in Jesus, we see the stories we share with children and teenagers as being packed with the powerful truth that God is amazing. And even more amazing – that He thinks we’re pretty great too!
We believe that by helping kids see the wonder of God, their hearts will be captivated by the love and story of Jesus, and that they’ll spend their whole lives learning what it means to be a follower. And then helping them follow Jesus.
Which leads to the next idea…
We think that everyone, from kids to adults, has a unique set of gifts, talents, and a perspective that we need in the Church.
We also know that God is doing something in their lives and in the world. We think that when these two stories intersect (the Story of God and the Story of Us), amazing things happen.
We focus on helping kids discover and learn who God is, what his values and priorities are, and how they can follow Him. We do this with crafts, games, activities, storytelling, videos, songs: we’ll pretty much do whatever we can to help them discover what God has in store for them.
Speaking of that…
We truly believe that God is passionate about kids and students (and everyone, really!) so we think it’s vital for kids to nurture a passion for God to sustain their faith. And this passion usually comes with helping them to find their place in the world. We think everyone has a mission for our lives, and it comes comes from where one’s passion and God’s passion meet.
We provide opportunities for families, kids, and students alike to find what they love, and do it for the glory of God – whether that’s building something, working with technology, playing an instrument, writing, or something wild and crazy we haven’t even thought of yet! We want to see everyone find their voice and calling, regardless of their age or background.
We think that it is critical to the life of the Church to have a thriving ministry to young people.
Young people give us life and vitality but more than anything they remind us that everyone, regardless of where they’ve come from in life, can be a conduit of God’s grace to the community. I know I need them to help shape me and guide me.
We believe that wonder, discovery, and passion aren’t just great ideas – they’re truth. And truth has a way of getting to our hearts and getting us moving. Where have you seen this truth in your life? Where is it at work in our church?