Saturday, February 23, 2013

When will I see a win? could be six months in that you feel like you leave a service and it was a win! It was for us...

HOWEVER, every week you have to remember there are little wins and you have to look for these bright spots!

Leaving feeling defeated when you don't know what you're doing is normal. You're not the only one that feels that way. If God called you to Kidmin, don't get discouraged and give up, keep trying. Here are some helpful tips:

1. Pray - Spend time with Jesus and ask for some help and encouragement. This alone time with Jesus is necessary to recharge, be connected, and for God to bless you and your (really HIS) minist

2. Really do number 1...we all KNOW that's what we're supposed to do; but are you really praying on a regular basis? Everyday? Set up a time and do it. (I'm talking to myself here...)

3. Find a mentor(s) - Find someone that is willing to invest in you. Your Senior Pastor might be a good one, but a seasoned fellow Kidmin Pastor is a really good place too. Find someone that you can serve and see if they will invest in your as well. Make this relationship a win-win, see how you can serve them. What are your strengths - are you creative and can make puppets or props? Are you the best filer ever? How can you serve this man or woman? See if they would be willing to invest in you as well. Be honest. Say, "Hey, I've seen how awesome you are in ministry and I'd like to learn from you. How can I serve you? Would you be willing to take some time to invest in me? If you find someone with this heart set up a weekly email communication and a monthly or every month meeting. Let them know what you're doing - receive their feedback, make changes! GROW~

4. Have a Beginner's Mind - Wait a second...admit you are a beginner? Yes... This will keep you open to learning new things and changing. Even when you are no longer a beginner, keep a beginner's mind so that you are open to changing, growing and continuing to succeed.

5. Train yourself - Listen to podcasts in the car, find great books, follow blogs, READ - there are so many resources out there - may are free. Google is your friend. Do some research and find great blogs/podcasts to follow and start learning. Ask people around you what they read. Seriously - there is a ton of free and inexpensive training out there. If you are new, you may have limited pay or be a volunteer - free is good! Utilize the time you are in your car to learn something new.

6. Find the Bright Spots - When are your kids most engaged? When do you lose their attention? What is a struggle. Take notes after service and be observant. As you observe what works well and what doesn't - make weekly changes. For us, bright spots are games. When they are playing a game, they are having fun, they are excited, and everyone feels good. Turn games into learning activities. Play Family Feud, Review Games after the lesson. Kids learn through play - they learn how to treat each other, they learn how to share, they are more likely going to learn what you want them to remember. And repeat what you are trying to teach for a few weeks, don't just jump onto the next topic. If you are talking about bullying (which we are right now) take at least 4 weeks to talk about it. Different things will sink in and they will start to remember and hopefully you will start to see change. Pray for your kids that God works in their hearts. He's really the one that's going to change them.

7. Use Other People's Ideas - Again, google is your friend! You don't have to come up with everything. If you don't already have a curriculum in place, do some research - there are tons of places with free ideas and curriculum - AND you don't have to follow it exactly. If they have talks that are too long for your kids, shorten them and use different parts, like the games or activities. Feel free to adapt things to your style and your kids, but don't feel like you have to come up with everything on your own either!

I'm sure I will have tons of other thoughts on this. But this is a good size list, so take what you can and do what you can! Don't be afraid to ask for help and keep moving forward. Don't give up yet. You may in 6 months or so find that this isn't for you, but give yourself at least 3-6 months before you give up! (seriously, closer to 6 seems to more accurate). And if you've been there for 6 months and you haven't done any of these things, then start and see if you recognize changes in how your Sundays go. Kid's are meant to sit still, and kids aren't always prepared to sit still on Sunday, like they do in school - so work with what you got and don't expect that to change. Expect that YOU are the one that's going to change, and move forward from there!