Measured on the dial, an hour a week to prepare a life for eternity is too brief a time to allow one wasted moment or one careless touch upon a soul. Henrietta Mears
Let’s face it, the amount of time we have with a kid is not growing. Once you take away vacation and sick days we probably only have 40 hours a year with our most faithful kids. And, when I look at all of the non-purposeful unstructured time in many Sunday kidmin programs, we could have much less than that. One estimate puts actual teaching time at only 17 minutes on an average Sunday. That would be less than 12 hours per year. The mission of leading kids to Jesus and the limited amount of time we have to do so each week, demands that we become intentional about every minute we have with our kids.
When “Sunday’s coming” it is easy to get into thinking “How am I going to fill the time?” versus “How am I going to leverage the limited time I have?” If leveraging the limited time you have with kids each week is important, I think the best thing we can do to make every minute count is to clarify what a win looks like at every level. A win is what are we aiming for in everything that we do.
Clarify the Win
In baseball, there may be all kinds of “wins” like strike outs, catching fly balls, tagging a runner out etc. . . but the difference between a winning team and a losing team boils down to one thing: how many runners cross home plate. The ultimate goal is to get as many people to cross home plate as possible. That’s it.
Define the “win” of your kidmin: If you only accomplished one thing what would it be?
Just like baseball, kidmin has wins. If you only accomplished one thing what would it be? You can define the win for kidmin itself, every program, every part of that program, every event, every volunteer role, every department. A good place to start is defining the win for all of kidman.
A “win” is not a mission statement.
A “win” is more than a mission statement. Mission statements tend to be broad and all encompassing: “We exist to magnify God by loving others the way Christ loved us to develop every person’s gifts to fulfill the great commission to reach the lost in Judea, Samaria and the ends of the earth . . .” That may be a great mission statement. It says a lot of things. A “win” is an irreducible minimum. If we could only do one thing what would it be?
Here’s a great kidmin win: when a kid takes the next step in a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. That’s a win.
What it might look like: It could be the first time an unchurched kid comes to your church. That’s a win. When a kid expresses an interest in following Christ. That’s a win. When a kid is open and transparent for the first time in a small group and a small group leader is able to speak God’s truth into that child’s life in a deeply personal and life transforming way. That’s a win. All of those are steps in a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.
Defining the win at this level will help you prioritize your ministry. If you can’t clearly define how something you are doing, whether it’s a program, an event, or a part of a program helps a child take the next step in a growing relationship with Jesus Christ, it might just be something that you should stop doing. Here’s where you can begin making a list of things not to do.
A great resource for more on this topic is 7 Practices of Effective Ministry
In my next post, I will talk about what wins might look like for a Sunday Morning program.
What’s your ministry win?