How well do you know your kids? Can you name 5 random facts about each one of your regulars? Studies have shown that your kids are only spend roughly 50 hours a year at church, making it very difficult to connect with your kids at a deeper level. Keeping up with the lives of the kids in your ministry can become a real struggle but the impact you can have on a child’s life when you are connected to them makes it well worth the challenge. Here are 5 tips to help you go form barely remembering your kids names to getting an invite to their birthday party.
5. Be a Part of their Small Groups
Whenever you send kids to small groups, take the time to find a group of kids you don’t know very well and join their group. This is a great way to know where you kids stand spiritually, you might be surprised by the answers the come up with. Each week pick a different group and over time you will find that the kids will be very comfortable talking to you about their lives and about God.
4. Celebrate Their Birthday
Every church has a different budget and can celebrate their kid’s birthdays differently, but no matter what you do, it will have a huge impact. If you can afford to mail your kids happy birthday cards or postcards go for it, but don’t forget to say happy birthday in person. You also want to follow up and find out how their big day went. I personally give out a little birthday gift to every kid either the Sunday before or after their birthday based on when I see them. Kids just want to know that you care about them and so celebrating their birthday is one of the easiest ways to do that.
3. Be There For the Big Events
Let the parents know that you would love to go to any special events like recitals or sports games that your kids are a part of. If you can make it to one of these events, your kids will always remember that their pastor cared about them a lot. From spelling bees to football games, getting out into the community to support your kids will help build a connection that can last for a lifetime.
2. Take them to Camp
The importance of camp can never be stated enough. When you take your kids to camp, you get them for an extended period of time with no distractions. The last camp we took our kids to, I got a group of boys in my cabin to share about their lives and ask me questions about God for over an hour. These are boys who at church never seem to be serious about anything really opening up to me and wanting to seek God.
1. Share the Good News
The best way to connect with your kids is to simply ask them how their week was. Every week at the start of my service, I have a segment called the Good News. This is a time where kids get to share with me and the class any highlights from their week. This was not my idea, they were doing this when I was hired at the church and I was going to cut it out of my program until I saw how easily I was able to have conversations with my kids because of it. Every week I have kids begging me to call on them to tell me about their lives…..it’s almost too easy. At the end of service, I make sure to find a few of the kids who shared and ask them more about it. What was once a segment I wanted to get rid of, has now become a key tool I use to connecting with my kids.