Jim Putman in his book REAL LIFE DISCIPLESHIP says, “Discipleship is intentional, relational, and strategic”. Making disciples is a life long process. It is not just a program, it is a lifestyle. It is empowering an individual to live a life in relationship with God. It is the very intent of God and Jesus carefully demonstrated it when he mentored his disciples and they in turn, the world. The idea, intent and command have not changed for over 2000 years but the methodology has changed in different generations. We have seen several movements and reformations and revolutions in the church history. Each of these was birthed according to the felt need of that generation.
What is the felt need of the 21st century child and youth? The life of a child in the 21st century is way different to that of their grandparents and parents, 20th century adults. There is a generation gap even among the 21st century born children because of the advancement of technology and the physical conditions of the world they live in. They are dealing with 4 generations of people influencing their lives. How relevant can we be to them? One of the ways to be relevant is to see what influences them and use that as a medium to share the absolute truth about God.
The typical approach of a Sunday school, children’s ministry or youth ministry is information based designed by people of the 20th century. Innovative ways are limited to yearly events like summer camps. What should change? Richard Jacobson from churchanarchist.com says, “Discipleship is about making a large investment in a small number of people rather than making a small investment in a large number of people.” Small groups mean more individual attention, personal interaction and strong relationships. KidsHubs goes one step further in small groups. It is application/skill-based. The children then use these skills to serve their church and local community and in some cases build a career.
Want to read more great articles like this one? Try the Aim Lower journal this month…
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