Kidologist.com: Karl Bastian's Personal Site and Blog
Archive for November, 2009
Just a few of the Kidologist's CM Books
Over the weekend I finally got to unpacking all my books from Chicago – a lifetime of children’s ministry and the inheritance of two pastor-dads and the heritage of a CE Director mother and as Kidology’s founder (who gets samples from publishers) - I am blessed with what could be the ultimate children’s ministry LIBRARY! I may have nearly every book and magazine ever published related to children’s ministry – and many go WAY BACK… it’s both incredible and frustrating. Not only because I could never read them all myself, but because I don’t know how to make them available to others. I couldn’t ever sell them, I don’t want to donate them, and yet they are all here sitting on shelves just LOADED with wisdom and ideas and sage advice and pages upon pages of knowledge! I wish I could scan them all and put them on Kidology.org, and yet for many of them, I’m not sure I’d have the right to do so – and researching the rights of each book would be too tedious to under take – and so here they all are – the ultimate children’s pastor library, here available only to me.
It got me thinking… I wonder if there were any children’s ministry leaders out there who would ever be interested in a residence program – just thinking out loud here – where they could just come to my house and have access to all my books, resources, tools, etc. and just enjoy several days of independent study here in beautiful Colorado. I’d be happy to avail myself for several meals for conversation and “brain picking” but otherwise, I’d just do my work, and leave them alone – What if I just said, Come! Study! Learn! Have full access to whatever of mine you want for several days. I’ll set you up with a desk and wireless Internet, and you can just browse anything I have and pack your brain full of as much as you can while you are here. Whatever you can extract from my brain while you are here can be bonus – but there is plenty on my shelves from others who have come before me or who have written from their knowledge and experience. I’d have some serious organizing and planning to do before I could do this – but I’m curious if the idea has merit.
It would be like a Self Study CM University – Kidology’s Colorado CM Independent University! What do you think?
My heart just breaks for those who are going through difficult times in ministry. Over in the Kidology forums I read of children’s ministry leaders who are going through incredibly difficult times in ministry – budget cuts, conflicts with leadership, church difficulties, etc. But one common thread that surfaces often is how over worked and exhausted leaders are and how many hours they are working and how their family life is suffering and how on the verge of quitting they are.
I’d like to be a bit bold and issue a DECEMBER CHALLENGE to all children’s ministry leaders.
Church ministry is hard. Church politics is so easy to run into even over incredibly petty stuff – simple mistakes turn into major missteps. A kind favor can end up stepping on sensitive toes. Generosity can be perceived as selfish ambition. You can bump into power control without even intending to. What you think will be embraced can be pushed away and what you think will be received with gratitude can instead be greeted with skepticism. It can be incredibly hurtful and discouraging if we allow it. It takes constant, even daily reminders of WHOM WE SERVE to keep sane. People will misinterpret – assume the worst, jump to conclusions, judge motives; all kinds of things, when you are just trying to serve the Lord.
LET ME ENCOURAGE YOU. EVEN ADMONISH YOU. I will say if you are doing too much (I’ve been there) you need to take drastic action and slow way down and get your family and personal life BACK at any cost. Slowing down a little doesn’t work. I’ve tried that. You must slow way down.
With the holidays coming – I’d say NOW is the time to pull away from the church and FORCE some family time. Set some office hours and stick with them. God will honor it! Here is a powerful concept: What doesn’t get done – doesn’t get done! Let what falls, fall! Seriously! Your family has fallen enough. THINK ABOUT IT: isn’t that what’s been happening at home? The bills that didn’t get paid? The lawn that didn’t get mowed? The kid that didn’t get played with? The laundry that didn’t get done? How come the home stuff was allowed to sit undone, but not the church stuff? How is that fair? How is that what God wants? Do you seriously think God wants that? Do you really believe family is first?
My pastor shared with me recently that he once asked himself, “When was the last time you canceled a church thing for family?” He knew family got canceled regularly. So he determined that church things needed to get canceled once in awhile for his family, instead of only the other way around. What a concept! It is time church got ‘hurt’ instead of family for a change!
MAKE THIS DECEMBER the month you put your family first!
I DARE YOU! And I seriously doubt God is going to let your ministry fall apart if you suddenly started putting Him and your family first.
I’m talking to EVERYONE READING THIS who knows that they have let the Monster of Ministry push their walk with God and/or their family aside. (Yes, YOU!)
IT IS TIME TO SAY NO MORE and make December the month you push back and say, forget it. “I’ve been pushed around by my job enough. I am taking charge. This is how much I am working. And what I get done gets done, and what doesn’t get done – too bad. Fire me. My family is more important to me than the church.” Them are fightin’ words! But them are godly words!! Them are words that will please God!! (and your family)
That attitude may sound like it will get you fired, but it actually might just save your job! If not, it will save your sanity.
And I’m not preaching from a mountain as one who has always done it right, I’m preaching as one who learned this the hard way, and has wounds and scars to prove it. So there is some anger and resolve in my passion. I will never let ministry hurt my family again.
It is time to stand up and push back and stop letting the church push you around! (but do it with grace)
ARE YOU WITH ME!?
WILL YOU TAKE BACK YOUR LIFE THIS DECEMBER???
Now that the third DiscipleTown unit, How to Grow Spiritual Fruit is available, I can’t help thinking about what a privilege it is for me to literally join with hundreds of children’s church teachers around the country, and some even farther away, in helping children learn the secrets to growing genuine spiritual fruit. It is my prayer that each teacher who uses this material will find it challenging and encouraging in their own spiritual journey as well. I know that as I have studied for and prepared these lessons I have been reminded again that I need to work less at “being good” and more at drawing closer to God to let His goodness shine through me!
I have to tell you, when I set out to start this series, I did not want to write just another series on the same old familiar “fruit of the spirit” stuff. I told the good folks at DiscipleLand, “teaching kids about the fruit of the spirit is like teaching someone how to be a banana. I’d rather teach someone how to grow bananas, or how to grow spiritual fruit, than do another series that just described the individual fruits of the Spirit.” They agreed, and I’m thankful they gave me the freedom to write a fresh approach on the topic. So you won’t be seeing lessons on what are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, etc. Instead, you will discover a series on what must take place in our life for those fruits to grow out of our lives naturally. For a banana tree does not work at growing bananas – it simply grows them because it is a banana tree!
Children get enough discouragement from adults who constantly tell them what they are doing wrong or need to do better. Kids need to hear more often how they are loved, forgiven, and believed in. They need to be encouraged and reminded that while their behavior may not always be on par, their value and worth are good beyond description! Kids are good in God’s eyes because he made them, and whatever God made IS good! He finished each day of creation by saying, “It is good.”
As we shepherd the children in our ministries, it is critical to focus on kids’ hearts more than their behavior. When we observe bad conduct, our primary instinct ought not to be to correct the behavior, but to mold the heart that determined the behavior. Plenty of techniques can shape children’s behavior, but if we only succeed in changing outward behavior, we will have only created little Pharisees who know how to behave at church. It is unlikely that those efforts will impact how they behave at home, at school, and after they outgrow children’s ministry. But if we reach their hearts and train children to grow spiritual fruit from the inside out, we will have truly succeeded in making disciples!
So this latest unit of DiscipleTown isn’t about helping children work harder at being good or striving to produce spiritual fruit. It is about equipping them to work with the Gardener in tending to their soul so that the fruit He wants to produce can be grown His way, naturally!
I look forward to teaming up with so many of you again – even as I am currently writing the next series, How to Choose Good Friends!
Be sure to join me in the new DiscipleTown forum – I love interacting with you about DiscipleTown – and your input and suggestions are impacting and shaping future units, so talk to me! And together, let’s make young disciples for Jesus!
Because Jesus Loves Children,
As I was surfing the web tonight, I stumbled upon an article about how deep the Congo river is: Evolution in the Deepest River in the World. As often happens if the word “evolution” is used, an evolution debate broke out in the comments. I get both amused and frustrated reading such conversations. Both by ignorant or arrogant evolutionists as well as overly simplistic or dogmatic anti-evolutionist. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind disagreeing with evolutionists. I have a honorary evolutionist friend who reads my blog (and will most likely jump on this post) and is now a friend on facebook (you know who you are) who I’ve enjoyed sparing with because he wasn’t arrogant or condescending even as he sharply disagrees with my theology and science – in fact, I’d rather argue with him than many Christians who I find petty or too quick to quote a Bible verse rather than use their brain.
So for the sake of knowing someone will read it, I want to re-post here, my soap-box comment that I posted on the article linked above. Feel free to add your comments below: (I was limited to 2000 characters, hence the brevity)
I love reading these evolution debates… usually they appear on barely related articles, like this one.
I’m glad SOMEONE brought up Micro and Macro evolution, since most people miss that there are two COMPLETELY different types of evolution, and I have to read people arguing and they are usually talking about two completely different ones.
Macro – change from one species to another – never seen or proven. ever.
Micro – changes within a species – YES, a fact and proven. repeatedly.
Christians and non-Christians, no need to argue about this, whether you believe the Bible and love Jesus or think its an old dusty book and Jesus was just a nice guy. Micro evolution is what all evolutionists use for evidence of evolution. only problem is, they tend to argue micro evolution as their proof for macro evolution. This is unfair and wrong.
Christians also, goof up by denying micro evolution when they start quoting the Bible to deny micro evolution (usually because they won’t be quiet long enough to listen to facts about micro) But evolutionist don’t want to admit THERE IS NO PROOF OF MACRO EVOLUTION. NONE. ZIPPO. ZILCH. frankly, its non-sense. but they can’t see it, because they don’t like the alternative, they realllly dont want to end up on the side of those wacky Christians. and that’s where I’m stuck.
I accept both the FACTS of micro evolution and truth of science*, everything that can be DEMONSTRATED and SEEN today, but also have to accept what CANT BE PROVEN, macro, which puts me in agreement with the goofy Christians, who turns out, all the evidence is on their side if you really look in to it with their explanation for creation and the flood & fossil record. I just wish they weren’t so goofy with the micro evolution stuff, and maybe more non-Christians would take a look at their facts on macro side. but then, most people don’t know there are TWO EVOLUTIONS. maybe a few will read this post and learn there are 2.
1) Most non-Christians are right on Micro Evolution but
2) Most Christians are right on Macro Evolution two bad we can’t stop calling names and be objective and get to the truth!
So, there is my rant and contribution to the looooong heated debate on evolution in the public square.
By the way, the world “Science” is thrown around a LOT and I get irritated because it seems a lot of the people who use the word science have no idea what science is. When I say I believe in true science, I am mean as defined by what can be demonstrated, otherwise, it isn’t science, it is meta physics. Anytime someone refers to evolution as science, please correct them. Micro evolution IS science. Macro evolution is not. You can politely say, “Oh, you mean the science of micro evolution? Oh, yes, that is scientific. I have no issue with that, nor does the Bible. But please don’t mix macro evolution with micro evolution. They are two completely different arenas of study. One can be studied and proven, they other can only be speculated and hypothesized to a reasonable degree.”
Make no mistake, there is an intentional effort to mix and confuse the two in secular education and media. The blur is being made on purpose, and we must make sure our children understand the difference. When they do, it helps them not only defend their faith, but in their own mind, separate the confusing messages they see and hear in text books, educational films and in museums. They can constantly recognize, “Oh, that’s micro – I can accept that as true.” or “Nope, that’s macro – that’s just their theory.” They can still learn it, but know its probably contrary to what the Bible teaches and therefore false.
Understanding the difference between Micro and Macro evolution makes all the difference in the world in navigating the Creation / Evolution debate.
As promised on Facebook and Twitter, here is the picture I posted and the captions that were entered in my “CAPTION THIS” contest:
"BUZZ BUZZED" (my caption)
To manyz donutz hurted my tummiez… (Allison Waters)
“i said KRYPTONITE!” not krispy kreme! (Barbara Neiger)
Luke became overwhelmed after learning that Buzz Lightyear – not Darth Vader – was his true father. And to think, the clues were there all along. (Jordan Bastian)
To infinity and beyond…the Krispy Kreme! (Todd Liebenow)
Buzz asked Jr. to taste test his new recipe that he got from Karl’s new cookbook! (Tammy Jones @vbscrazy)
Toy Story 3: No Doughnut Gets Left Behind (@alyssaglick)
To Immodium and beyond! (@marc_romero)
the evil pirate Zorkons were approaching us from the aft vector to raid our donut loot, but I was able to prevent them. *burp* (Glenn Woods @thurios)
Donut try this at home, I’m a trained professional (@samluce)
EXPOSED: Buzz Lightyears secret desire-join the police. (@j_doss)
To Naptime and Beyond! (@fathershousekid)
This is what happens when those intergalactic cops have their fill of doughnuts. (@franktan)
AND THE WINNER IS:
“To infinity and….oh, are those doughnuts? Um….never mind, saving the galaxy can wait. MMMMM….. doughnuts……” (Rob Siebert)
Rob: Twitter or FB message me and name and claim your prize!
(What do you want? Ask reasonably and ye just might receive!)