Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Training up the next generation

Had a great time unveiling our developmental model for our Life Church parents on Sunday. It's a model that I developed with a friend while at NewSong in Cleveland.

We developed the model out of frustration that most children and youth curriculum and programs, while age-appropriate, had no comprehensive template to address their psycho-social development. Because of this, we miss out on addressing and celebrating the various stages of growth and maturity that young people will go through.

We want to help our young people to..
  • Follow Jesus and commit to his ways
  • Develop servant's hearts
  • Develop Godly habits
  • Learn the beauty of interdependence in the body of Christ

In the childhood stages, the children move through three specific stages that culminate in our soon-to-be-launched 5th and 6th grade ministry that is our commitment and commissioning stage. At this stage we will help them with identity issues, talk to them about what a commitment is and share with them 4 specific commitments we want them to consider. The final piece to this ministry is an incredible weekend away that celebrates their coming of age. My daughter went through this and it is an emotional and touching ceremony an celebration.

In the high school years we found that young people emerge in the same three stages as children but this time in the context of adolescence. Here we reinforce the commitments but this time in the context of community. The goal during these years is to ultimately move our young people towards interdependence as it is spelled out in 1 Corinthians 12:12-26.

We have a great team of people who are committed to our children and youth and are fired up about implementing the model. And yes, I have 3 very good reasons (see profile) to make this happen. It was a fun day and we are looking forward to our September launch.