Steve Jobs and Apple made famous the phrase, “Think Differently,” but creative “out of the box” thinking is not limited to technology developers. It applies to children’s ministry too.
Creative innovators see the world differently. They reject how things have “always been done.” They see things in a new way. Just yesterday I saw a car port in the Home Depot parking lot where most saw a cart bin.
OK, that might not be children’s ministry – but are you constantly looking for ways you can see things differently? How can things be done differently? What new approach can I try? How have we never done it?
Let me give you a great example from my good friend and amazing children’s pastor friend, Shelly Sexton down in sunny Florida. She recently brought me in to do some magic for a huge summer outreach she was doing call “Kingdom Hearts.” They rented a civic center, built a castle and brought in hundreds of kids and more volunteers than I could count to creatively share the Gospel with their community.
Secure check-out in this unique setting was a challenge. The previous year they did it similar to how Sunday’s are done at church – and it took a very long time to get all the kids securely returned to the correct adult. So Shelly decided to try something completely new that I’ve never seen before and as a result several hundred kids were checked out in under ten minutes! How? She created what she called a “Valet Service” for child pick up. Parents came in with their security tag, waited behind a rope and a fleet of valet volunteers who greeted parent, got their child’s name, ran to get the kid, and brought them out, confirming check-in sticker and then releasing. It was cool to see how fast the system worked rather than having parents crowding halls and then going one at a time. I liked it so much, we are implementing the same idea for our own midweek program this fall.
What’s not working? How could you do it differently? What have you never tried before?
Go for it!