Judges 2 and the Passion of Children's Ministry
“And there arose another generation who did not know the Lord or the work that he had done in Israel.” –Judges 2:10. This verse is perhaps one of the most shocking verses in all of scripture. The context for this verse is that God’s people, the Israelites, had just lost their great leader, Joshua, and were living in the land promised to them by God. By all accounts, escaping from Egypt (the Exodus), wandering in the wilderness (books of Leviticus-Deuteronomy), defeating their enemies (book of Joshua), should have been the most difficult circumstances the people faced. They finally had acquired what God had promised them!
However, the people did not tell their children about what God had accomplished on their behalf, and resultantly, a generation of children were born and raised not knowing God in any real way. We at Willow Creek Church are committed to making sure the children who walk through our doors know the Lord and the work that he has done for his people. How do we accomplish this you ask?
This is done through a myriad of ways, but namely through prayer, preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and committing ourselves to raising up fantastic adult leaders.
Prayer: We pray for our children. And our children know that they are prayed for. Each week, in Sunday School, Children’s Worship, and IGNITE, our children have the opportunity to share prayer requests with their leaders. We have over 50 adults who pray for the needs of those who share. When we communicate with God, and when we demonstrate communication with God, our children see the value of prayer in their lives. “The prayer of a righteous man has great power as it is working.” –James 5:16b.
Preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ: Our children know that God has accomplished much for us as our creator, life-sustainer, provider, etc. However, absolutely central to his message is the gracious, undeserved salvation that he provides to sinful humanity through the redemptive work and victory of Jesus Christ on the cross. Our children will never walk away from our children’s ministry without hearing how God loved them through his coming as a man, Jesus Christ, dying on the cross, and offering a way to be redeemed to God the Father and to live the life that we were created to live in the present. The “good news” of the Gospel is the single foundation of this entire ministry. “While we were still in our sin, Christ died for us.” –Romans 5:8
Raising up Fantastic Adult Leaders: “It takes a village to raise up a child,” is a common saying in society. Our children’s ministry is firmly committed to that belief but would tweak the saying to say, “It takes a strategic village to raise up a child.” Yes, any adult has the capability to sit in a room with a child and make sure they do not get physically hurt. However, our ministry is committed to searching for those who are passionate, are gifted, and who love Jesus Christ first, even before they love our children. We are so blessed to have many, many, wonderful leaders who commit their time, talent, and treasure to our children’s ministry. Our children hear about the work the Lord has done, most significantly, from their teachers and leaders because he has done great works in their lives.
We love our children at WCC. And we are humbled to have the opportunity to share what the Lord has done, that the next generation might know their God in a real, profound way.