You must have been in my house...

My wife and I have been co-directing our 5th and 6th grade Wednesday night club for boys and girls called Champions. We have been utilizing a new preteen curriculum to structure the topics that we are introducing and discussing called Grapple from Group Publishing. We have been impressed with the material as its relevance to where our clubbers are is absolutely undeniable. It is interesting to talk about "loving" and "sacrificing" for their siblings and exploring reasons why their parents "always say no". Well, we had a parent step in as a substitute this week and she encouraged me even further when she mentioned that we must have been at her house because the topic we were going over was spot on to what they were dealing with. Not only am I impressed with the topics, but the way they are approached in the material is solid and Bible-focused as well. It is nice to be able to help our clubbers discover who God is and how He relates to them through His Word. We want to make sure they get the message that the Bible is as relevant today as it was "back then".

It is a bit of a validation for our perspective as well. We were pretty strong in the relationship department when it came to the children's ministries that we were involved with but felt a real lack of focus when it came to the teaching aspect. I was always under the impression that we were a solid curriculum away from blowing this thing wide open and clicking on all the cylinders that we needed to drive this ship effectively. In the first 6 weeks of this whole experiment I think that we have finally cracked that nut. We haven't arrived - we must make a dozen or so mistakes a night - but what we have done is made sure that the questions we are addressing aren't made up in our heads. In fact, they're so relevant that I saw kids come out of their seats in opposition when I mentioned that we ought to think about how we can serve our siblings. I also saw quite a bit of struggle on their faces when I mentioned that they ought to think about sharing one of the two Twinkies they just won in a modified "Let's Make a Deal" game.

All in all, and so far, this has been the most satisfying year in Wednesday-night children's ministry that I have had. I just pray that we can see more kids come that don't know Christ and some kids actually beginning a relationship with him as a result of hearing the Gospel. These next couple of weeks we will have plenty of opportunity to consider the claims of Christ and examine the ramifications of them. It is going to be a wild ride.


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