A Glimpse Behind the Scenes

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Today at work, I had a few minutes between assignments, so I decided to take a walk through the Children’s Ministry wing at our church. It was empty of children today as it is only Wednesday, however, there was activity going on that blessed me to witness. Though we have been going to this church for quite some time I hadn't yet had the privilege of seeing that portion of our church. So, today, as I strolled through the hallways and peeked into the empty classrooms, I was seeing this ministry area with fresh eyes. The cheerful murals on the walls and joyful decorations in the rooms put a huge smile on my face. As I walked and admired the happy feel of the place, I thought back to when I was a child. Back then, Sunday school was rather bland. It was a place that I didn't relish going and as I think back I can see that it wasn't a very child-friendly atmosphere. However, the room into which I now looked made me wish I could go back in time and be a child once more.

I heard some noise in the room, so I stepped inside.  This was the area for the kids to worship and hear a message about Jesus.  By the looks of the stage, with its meticulously painted backdrop and props, I could see that it was an exciting place to learn about God and to hear His message of love.  To one side of the stage there was a full-sized fishing boat that was being painted by one of the children’s ministry workers. She stopped for a moment and we talked a bit about what goes on there on Sunday mornings.  I was impressed by the amount of prep-work done by many dedicated servants of the Lord, that I’m sure not even the parents are fully aware of. 

Afterward, I walked back to the office and looked for the Children’s Pastor.  I wanted to thank him for the service he is doing for the next generation and how I know God must be pleased.  I was a bit embarrassed, though, because the moment I started speaking with him, my voice cracked from the emotions that were bubbling up inside me.   Ok, you might be thinking, “empty-nester syndrome”, or “hormones!”, but I don’t think so.  I believe I was moved by the Spirit of God.  He allowed me to see just a glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes, and I was blessed.  I was witness to a few minutes of the many hours of loving planning and preparation that goes on during the week in order to make “Sunday school” an inviting, welcoming and safe place for the kids.  The pastor told me that his inspiration came from his own childhood experience of not feeling welcome or accepted in Sunday school.  When he was just a little boy, he promised himself that if he were “ever in charge of Sunday school” he would make it a place where kids wouldn’t feel rejected.  It would be a place where they would want to come and have fun as they learned about God. 

And isn’t that exactly what Jesus wantsHe wants us to be excited about getting to know Him!  He invites us into relationship with Him, not just as adults, but as enthusiastic children, too!   

"Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the 
kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these" (Matthew 19:14).

So today, let’s run to Jesus with a child-like heart, full of excitement and joy as we seek to grow in our relationship and experience all He has to share! 

Living for Him,






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20 comments

  1. Lovely post Joan, that's why I love children's ministry so much, with the preparation, crafts, 'fun' in getting know the true giver of joy! Often something adults forget about with the pressures of life.

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  2. Hi Joan - its great when God touches people's hearts in this way to make change, good change, for others.  God bless friend
    Tracy

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  3. Come to think of it, Sunday school was rather bland. I am thankful for those who serve in children's ministry - teaching these little ones about Jesus. They are the future.

    Blessings...

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  4. So true.  As adults we do often forget the joy of getting to know the Lord.  We get caught up in our daily routine and then things that press in on us.  But, when we do that, we miss out on one of the best things He has to offer -- His joy!

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  5. Yes, it is!  I know I didn't exactly explain all I was feeling and saw, but I must say I was truly moved.  I am praying a pray of thanksgiving for all those who serve in Children's Ministry!

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  6. I love seeing children excited about going to Sunday school and learning about God! I pray that enthusiasm rubs off on all of us!  lol

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  7. I'm glad you shared this... brought a lump to my throat re: the children's pastor.  God sure does use our past to shape our future (and the future of others) for the better.  I am reminded of the text "beauty for ashes".  

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  8. I love how God never wastes a hurt! Blessings, Wendy!

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  9. When I grew up SS seemed a bit bland too, but there are so many exciting programs now that get the love of Christ across to our sweet children and grandchildren.  As adults we need that excitement too!

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  10. I was Children's Director for almost 20 years.  Oh, how I loved it.  Now my "kids" have kids of their own.  I was blessed to have interesting Sunday School growing up.  That's what drew me to become a Children's worker.  It blesses me to see those I taught stepping up and doing their part. 

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  11. How special for you to stop and consider this part of your church and for sharing your thoughts and experience with us.  I do want to have that childlike heart and It gives me incentive to pray for and thank those in my church who are in this ministry also. I was so excited to hear the children's pastor's testimony.  It's a God thing when someone holds a desire like that from childhood and then fulfills it in adulthood.  God knows who to invest in!
    Blessings.

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  12. Like this!  Your noticing and gratitude, sharing it with us, and the pastor's testimony.  God planted a seed in him and nutured it to fruition.
    Blessings.

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  13. What an inspiring post. I totally agree. Sunday School should be a place where children feel love and acceptance. In the "old days" a couple of outdated pictures on the wall seemed to be the norm. I'm glad your church has taken steps to make it a wonderful place for children to learn about God. Thank you for sharing your experience.
    Blessings,Charlotte

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  14. We can learn a lot from the exuberant joy of children!  What a blessing it is to come to Him!

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  15. Yes.  When our Children's Pastor let me know his experience as a child, I was touched.  And then to know that through that painful experience God worked to create a wonderful Children's teacher with a heart for little ones, warmed my soul!

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  16. God sure does know what He's doing!!  Another thing that happened as I walked through the classrooms and spoke with the Pastor:  I was encouraged to throw myself even more fully into "my" area of ministry!  "Throw yourself into the work of the Master confident that nothing you do for Him is a waste of time or energy!"  (2 Corinthians 15:58 msg)

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  17. I love that, too.  What God started in him (and in us) as little children, He will continue it until we see Him face to face!  What a joy that is!

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  18. I think that people have realized that kids learn in different ways than adults...and have now made positive changes to encourage their growth.  What a blessing!

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