orchard kids: jz announements

{This past weekend I was given the opportunity to do announcements and speak about Orchard Kids. I love speaking AFTER I do it, but I get myself all worked up and nervous beforehand. I couldn’t eat and my armpits were sweating like crazy. But, I love sharing my heart for children and for God, so I’m really glad I did it. Thank you for your support, Orchard, and for continuing to pray for our ministry!}

I have been reading this book- Children’s Ministry in the Way of Jesus by David Csinos and Ivy Beckwith which I highly, highly recommend you check out if you will ever come into contact with a child in your lifetime.  I feel like I have underlined and highlighted the whole thing! But I wanted to share with you an excerpt today…

“Children’s ministry is less about providing children with absolute answers and more about helping them live faithfully with questions and doubts that arise on the journey of discipleship. It aims at nurturing the whole life of the child and not compartmentalizing the child’s church life from the rest of the child’s life. It realizes that children feel God’s love when they are surrounded by a close-knit faith community who loves them and sees them as valued participants. It realizes that children make the values of God’s reign their own by seeing them lived out radically in their churches and homes, not simply by learning about them in a classroom or through a programmed activity. It understands that children are learners and teachers, and that they have as much to teach adults about life in God’s kingdom as we adults have to teach them. Jesus said one must become like a child to enter God’s kingdom. We take these words seriously as we seek to minister with children.”

I love that, and our heartbeat for Orchard Kids is exactly that. Our hope is that each child would know that they are deeply loved and uniquely made by God, and we desire to create multi-sensory spaces for them to experience God in a way that is meaningful to them.

Our team has been researching how children learn and grow best, such as through different learning styles and the multiple intelligences, and are working hard to develop teaching and activities to help kids connect personally with God.

We have introduced Discovery Stations using Open Ended Art, Movement, Reading, Reflection, and Imaginative Play in hopes to develop the curiosity and wonder that comes with the mystery and joy of knowing God. It has been thrilling to hear how these kids are taking what God’s speaking to them and applying it to their individual lives.

Our kids are so used to flashy, manufactured, gimmicky, and loud things all the time. Our hope and desire is that we create an authentic and sacred space that is different from what our kids are experiencing during the week. I’d love if you would continue to pray for our team as we prayerfully consider what this looks like for our community in the days to come.

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2 thoughts on “orchard kids: jz announements”

  1. Jenni, you are doing a great job! But, I get the feeling that this is much more (and better) than a job for you – it’s a passion and a calling :) I can FEEL how much you love Orchard Kids <3

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