Cool Kidmin Idea: The VIP Couch

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This weekend, I got to visit the church of my good friend, Todd McKeever in Des Moines, Iowa. Their children’s ministry is wonderful. I am always on the look out for super creative and original ideas that others may want to learn about. While there were many things I was impressed with, the coolest thing I got to both see and experience was the VIP Couch in their children’s church room. In the front of the room they have a big couch. Guests (as well as the friend who brought them) are invited to sit on the couch for the entire service – but not only that, a child volunteers to serve them yummy snacks throughout the service. They can have as much as they want, with only two rules. They have to eat the snacks while on the couch (no stocking up and taking a bunch home) and they are asked not to eat during worship time. It is a great way to honor guests, to give kids an incentive to invite a friend, and provides a way for another child to serve as they offer snacks throughout the service, any time they notice they are done. I assumed …

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Bring a Familiar Bible Story to Life

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It was my turn to teach this Sunday. (I rotate with other volunteers.) I get my lesson plan mid-week and see that my Bible story is David and Goliath. I immediately can hear in my minds eye, “We know this story!” My Mission: Bring this story to life in a new, fun and interactive way. The Secret: Use the kids! (And lots of props) I have always said that children’s ministry is “stuff-intensive” because children are both highly visual and sensory. Their brain engages when they are holding things. If you aren’t bringing a box of stuff with you any time you teach, you may be undermining your effectiveness! So, as I reviewed the Bible story, I looked for something new. By the way, always review directly from the Bible no matter how well you think you know the story – new insights will always jump from the page, and the familiar will make new things stand out. As I read about David’s father sending him with snacks, I thought of a funny way to communicate that visually. as you will see. I also made a list of props I would need. Since I couldn’t take pictures during my lesson, …

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Happy Birthday Me, Got the new iPhone 7 Today

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So, my wife says, “Hey, honey – got an e-mail from Verizon. They are running some kind of deal today on upgrading your iPhone.” So, over lunch I drop in to see what the deal is. Turns out I can double the memory, get way more data and some extra coolness on the side for no money down and only $3 more a month through some creative clicking by my “Solutions Specialist” Josh. At one point I ask him, “So how long has this new iPhone been out?” Suddenly everyone in the store goes silent and turns and looks at me as he answers, “Um, today.” No kidding. “So that’s why there are balloons and free donuts!” I say. Turns out there were lines this morning, but I was in and out in 20 minutes. So far Iike it. But as with most major upgrades, ot is not without some head scratching. Current issues Videos won’t sync, though I notice it now allows Shared Libraries, so I can see movies on my iMac, but not the ones selected in iTunes to transfer. Music Playlists won’t sync, probably a related issue. Music displays every song you ever bought (while none that …

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Celebrating a Year at Kids Rock

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It’s hard to believe it has been a year since I started as the children’s pastor at the Rock of Southwest! As I reflect back on the year, it is so satisfying to think of all the amazing things I have gotten to do as I’ve worked with some incredible staff and volunteers! Just scrolling through my Facebook wall is overwhelming and brings back so many memories. I inherited a ministry that was well staffed both from paid staff and volunteers; a place where kids were valued and where there was freedom to be creative and try new things. It was nice to start a ministry that wasn’t “on fire” and be able to build upon a solid foundation. Here are some of the highlights for me from the past year: We started with “POOF” – a meet the new Kids Pastor magic show that was a lot of fun! Relaunching children’s church as The Outpost and teaming up with some amazingly creative volunteers to bring a whole new level of large group learning filled with time machines, Minecraft portals, fun green screen videos, puppets and more! Launching The Outpost Crew and getting kids involved in leadership! Making videos with them! …

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Judging Books by Their Covers

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You know the old saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover”? Well, I disagree! I often judge books by their covers. In fact, I not only judge them – I learn from them! One of my favorite things to do when I visit a bookstore is to get some leadership training from the book titles alone. Now, don’t get me wrong, I think the books may be great, and filled with some amazing tips and wisdom, but often, the title alone is food enough for thought. On a recent trip I spent some time in a Barnes and Nobles and couldn’t help thinking how helpful the book titles were… and I didn’t need to spend a dime! Here is a small collection of the book titles I saw, and learned from. And I’m a better leader for it! Sure, you can google any of these book titles and buy them, but here is what I learned or was reminded of, just from the covers! These are in no special order, simply the order in which I took the pictures… Ministry can pull us in many directions – they may all be GOOD directions, but it is critical that we …

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