I got into cooking shows while researching for the Kids Church Cookbook, and I was amazed at the wide variety of shows on the Food Network. One I discovered was called Dinner: Impossible! Loosely hinting at the 1960’s show Mission: Impossible, the host is given a challenge that includes some kind of meal he needs to prepare, some obstacles he has to overcome, and a time limit. He doesn’t know what the challenge will be until he arrives, and then the clock starts counting down. If I were put in that situation, I’m sure everyone would either starve or be forced to eat terrible food.
I would love to be the host of a show called Kid’s Church: Impossible! I think it would be a wonderful challenge to be given a Bible story or Biblical topic, some limited props or supplies, and a time limit and have to come up with a complete lesson and then teach it. Perhaps that sounds like a nightmare situation to you, but the reality is, it happens all the time in children’s ministry. Maybe it doesn’t happen on Sunday mornings, because you ought to be planning your lessons weeks in advance.
But you don’t have to be in children’s ministry long to learn that there are many situations in which you find yourself suddenly needing a lesson. Perhaps your senior pastor comes up with a special program and asks you to provide “child care” at the last minute and even says he’d like you to teach on the same topic as he will be teaching to the adults. Or maybe one of your volunteers calls in sick the night before and can’t send you the lesson plan but says, “we are learning about Joseph and are right up to the point when he becomes second in command and his brothers show up.” You’ll need to pick up right where last week’s lesson left off. You may even be out of town on vacation and visiting your family’s church when the children’s pastor gets ill, and they say, “Aren’t you a children’s pastor? Can you do Kid’s Church? It’s Missions Sunday, can you take over?” No sweat! You can jog your mind through the C.R.E.A.T.E. mental triggers or whip out your CREATIVE IDEA THING-A-MA-JIGGER*, and you will be good to go!
I hope that you have been encouraged to start flexing your creativity muscle. The more you create, the better and faster you will become. Soon you will be amazing yourself and your students with your creative ideas. And don’t forget, you can share your ideas on Kidology.org so that other teachers all over the world can use your them too! Imagine…children in classrooms all over America, literally in classrooms thousands of miles away, laughing and learning because of YOUR idea!
Because Jesus Loves Children,
Chef Karl D. Bastian aka The Kidologist
[Reprinted from the FINAL TOUCHES conclusion to Chapter 5 of The Kids Church Cookbook: Getting Creative]
*The CREATIVE IDEA THING-A-MA-JIGGER is a device that comes with the Kids Church Cookbook Part 5 that I invented that helps you trigger creative ideas… Here are some quotes about my little invention and how it has helped people who didn’t think they were creative: