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Christine has over 20 years of children's ministry experience. She's the author of 10 books and hundreds of articles related to children's ministry. It's no wonder she enjoys an almost-daily latte to keep her going! She is also the executive editor of Children's Ministry Magazine and serves as Group's children's ministry champion, responsible for research, development, and innovation in children's ministry resources. 

What's the Church's Role?

This will be brief, but it's the one burning question that's on my mind right now: What is the unique role of the church in an information age?

I'd love to dialogue with anyone about this. I venture that it's not information.

Posted at 19:58

Speak Your Volunteers' Love Language

Last week, I was talking to Todd and Jay Hostettler (son/father) at the Mile High Children's Ministry Fellowship luncheon about what says "I appreciate you" to volunteers. One of them said that some volunteers want you to acknowledge them by spending time with them--coffee or a basketball game at the park. I said I wouldn't want that as a volunteer--nor would I want to attend a volunteer appreciation banquet. What I love about my preschool coordinator, Jana Jones, is that she makes me feel so appreciated and valued in every conversation on Sunday morning and in every email.

You see, my "love language" is "acts of service" and Jana serves me by being sensitive to how busy I am and making me feel appreciated. But not everyone has the same love language. And we risk making our volunteers feel unappreciated when we're not fluent in their love language.

To learn more about what your volunteers' love language is--check out this article from "Say It With Love"

Posted at 18:33

In Over Your Head?

This morning in my home, I saw this tiny spider with two strands of a highly ambitious web from the floor to the ceiling (our ceilings are 20 feet high!). It just hung there; I think kind of exhausted. Not sure what it had bitten off and contemplating what to do next. Once it got started, it didn't know where to stop.

I owed it a debt because it made me think of me in all those times I get in over my head. I just came out of one of those times. I take on things I really shouldn't. I do too much. I work on the wrong things. And I get overwhelmed.

Maybe you do that, too...oh, yeah, you're in ministry. Of course you do that sometimes!

Let me tell you what I've figured out that motivates me to get in over my head. I like to rescue people...and the reason why? I've got this odd "hero complex" that I hope when I save the day, everyone will applaud me and ultimately like me. (My friend who does the same thing does it because she's afraid of failure.)

In one of these "I'm doing too much times," I had a VP here tell me how he'd told the president of the company how heroic I'd acted. "Stop!" I told him. "You're feeding the monster!"

To climb out of the pit I dig for myself, I have to cut off the sick monster's need to be fulfilled with accolades. I have to acknowledge that I'm making decisions for the wrong reasons. I have to let things fail.

And, in the end, you know what? I get healthier and so does the team. Hmmm...who would've thought? I think that's why God sent that little tired spider into our living room this morning. To remind me--and you maybe--that it's ok to hold up a white flag and admit that whatever you're doing isn't working. It's okay to quit rescuing. Or leading a program. Or doing a project. Especially if your sick monster is motivating you--instead of the right reasons.

By the way, I didn't have the heart to kill the spider (now it'll probably bite me when it grows up!).

Posted at 18:55

Buzz--Not for Every Volunteer

After developing Buzz and watching how people have responded to it, I know something for sure--Buzz is NOT for every volunteer.

Here's who it's NOT for: The volunteer who goes the extra mile to prepare the lesson. The volunteer who goes online to find better crafts, games, or whatever to improve the curriculum. The volunteer who's a trained educator. The volunteer who doesn't bat an eye at an hour of reviewing the lesson ahead of time.

Here's who it IS for: The volunteer who loves kids but hates preparation. The volunteer who has 10 minutes to pray and read a devotion to prepare his/her heart. The volunteer who doesn't have a clue about educational theory. The volunteer who's said no to you for years because he/she doesn't have enough time to prepare or isn't an educator.

So, trust me...don't use Buzz if your team is full of the first kind of volunteer (I'd recommend FaithWeaver instead). But if your church is full of the second kind of volunteer, I can guarantee that Buzz is the curriculum you're looking for.

Check it out at today!

Posted at 17:56

Pastoring or Pasturing?

So I keep typing the word "pastoring" in something I'm working on and Word defaults to "pasturing."

So I looked up "pasturing." It means to feed. While I won't to be correct, of course, I love that meaning--to feed. Jesus said to "feed my sheep" three times to Peter. That's what we do in children's ministry, we feed Jesus' sheep--we pastor them and pasture them, I suppose.

God bless you as you feed his sheep throughout this coming weekend! 

Posted at 17:46


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