by Amy Grisham
These words are overheard in ministries everywhere. Spoken by us volunteers, especially on Sundays (like the one before Christmas or before the last day of school before summer break) when the children in our ministries are more than their normal rambunctious and distracted selves. As volunteers, we wonder: “Am I making any kind of impact? Are they hearing anything I said? Did they even notice the set in large group? Did they enjoy the activities I worked to prepare? And will they remember this during their week when faced with a situation that this lesson could apply to?”
Be assured, what you are doing matters! Every bit of it. And it matters in major ways! While you may not see the fruit on a specific Sunday, you can know that every part played in creating what the children in your ministry experience makes a difference. Just ask a parent, a sibling, a grandparent, a teacher—anyone who has regular relationship with the children you have the opportunity to pour into each week. Remember, as volunteers, we get a very short snapshot of the entirety of the lives of these children. BUT there are people who see them, interact with them day-in and day-out who do get to see the fruit of what you are doing.
- If you put together supplies for small group leaders, you are providing the tools for children to better understand God’s Word and how to implement it in everyday life.
- If you create a large group stage, you set up hosts and storytellers to engage children.
- If you are a small group leader, you are modeling relationship, accountability, and serving.
- If you make copies of Parent Cue and GodTime cards, you are helping your church connect parents to what their children are learning on Sunday!
Every single piece that goes into our ministry environments matters to the children we are ministering to!
Want to get a peek at the “bigger picture”? Connect with parents, grandparents, and friends of the children in your small group-through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. When you are connected with them, it gives you the opportunity to share in what the children do when you aren’t with them in the day-in, day-out times. Keep note of what parents share with you, of the children who are baptized, of the stories that they share with you about their weeks. These will be the opportunities to hear about the impact you are actually having.
And, truth is, sometimes, with some children, the fruit may be years in coming—but it will come. A parent, a sibling, a neighbor, a teacher, a classmate will be immensely impacted by words spoken, prayers prayed, games played that actually taught a child how to respond to a situation in a way that reflects God to others. YOU are ALL a part of teaching them God’s Word and what it looks like to respond to those around them in ways that reflect God! YOU are taking our faith to the next generation! Keep up the AWESOME work, good and faithful servant!