As a children’s pastor, I am constantly challenged because there is so much that I want to teach our children. For many of our children, I recognize that our ministry is the only opening of God’s Word that they will experience during their week. Then, add to that fact, many of our children only attend our services sporadically. While we do have the weeklies (those who attend every weekend), there’s a portion of our attendance that are the bi-weeklies, the monthlies, and finally the CEO’s (Christmas and Easter Only) attendees. This makes my decision for what is taught in those precious 90 minutes each service so important.
There are so many curriculums available today with great Bible information. We’ve come a long ways from the type of curricula that we had when I started in children’s ministry hundreds of years ago. There are teaching packages with all of the high-tech bells and whistles. Many are non-stop excitement and drama. Some are very culturally relevant addressing issues that children are facing today in their homes and schools.
All of this is well and good. But, before I as a children’s pastor start looking at what to teach, I always have to know in my spirit that there is a solid foundation of the “Essential Four” before I build the remainder of the structure. Before there is teaching about morals and how to’s and why to’s, I want to know in my heart that the children sitting in front of me have a solid understanding of these four core values:
- Salvation by the blood of Jesus
- The baptism in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues
- Christ as Savior and Healer
- The imminent return of Christ