Yesterday, I attended a breakout session with Dawn and Kwan entitled “Taking the Gospel Beyond the Walls of Your Church”. Our church has just begun to explore “the great outdoors”, so I was excited to hear more about strategies and logistics from this name-rhyming dynamic duo!
To begin, Kwan explained that the kids program at his church is called HQ (Headquarters). He loves this name because it implies that kids come into the the church to get their mission assignment and marching outdoors but then head back out to in order to execute the mission. I have to admit, I love the picture of church being Headquarters. It’s someplace we can go to recuperate, share problems, brainstorm strategies together and get new assignments — but we don’t spend the majority of our time there. The majority of our time is spent in the world, in the community, on the mission field. I can’t wait to share this word picture with my team!
Additionally, Dawn and Kwan really emphasized waiting on God’s timing. Change is a slow process and something you need to take a whole year or a few years really preparing the church and rallying the troops. Dawn told us about her experience with Vacation Bible School. Here’s the quick version:
- Year #1: Real Assessment of VBS: Are we happy with the results? Are we satisfied with the experience? (150 Kids in attendance)
- Year #2: Cut Decoration Budget (150 Kids in attendance)
- Year #3: Changed the format to evening VBS and focused on equipping parents to lead kids toward Christ (48 Kids in attendance)
- Year #4: Took VBS to the streets and hosted the program in back yards (1,000 kids in attendance)
Talk about growing pains, huh? If the church didn’t go through year #3, it would have never been prepared for year #4, but I’m sure there was a lot of head shaking and nay-saying in the process!
The point is… sometimes we have to wait. Sometime we catch a vision from God, but the timing isn’t right. Sometime the change is a SLOW process, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t on the right track.