A great work of art is an expression of the artist. Yes, there are accepted standards and learned techniques that guide the artist, but in the end an accomplished artist takes in an aspect of reality, digests it, and expresses it in a way that is uniquely representative of the artist. Artists spend countless hours studying and appreciating other established works of art, not to copy these works of art, but to grasp onto the spirit and nuances of that art. Then they allow those works of art to influence what and how they create art.
In the same way, missional children’s ministries want to teach families and children the many attributes and characteristics of God as he has revealed himself through Scripture, history, nature and personal experience. They then want families and children to move beyond knowledge of God to discovering who God is to them. In other words, missional children’s ministries want families and children to recognize how God is uniquely revealing himself to them. Missional children’s ministries want families and children to use what they’ve learned about God to paint a picture of who God is in their lives. This picture will look different for each family and child, and this picture will change over the course of a family or child’s life. In this way God becomes real and present in the lives of families and children. He becomes more than a character they read about in the Story, he becomes the author of the Story they are a part of.
What are your thoughts on allowing children and families to discover who God is? Is it OK to let children and families “paint a picture of who God is in their lives?”
This post is part of a larger series outlining what children’s ministry looks like from a missional mindset. Check out the other posts in this series:
Missional Children’s Ministry | A Brief Definition
Missional Children’s Ministry | Knowing God’s Story
Missional Children’s Ministry | Becoming a Part of God’s Story
Missional Children’s Ministry | Discover Who God Is
Missional Children’s Ministry | Experience God’s Love
Missional Children’s Ministry | Live God’s Way
Missional Children’s MInistry | Bring God’s Kingdom to This World
Missional Children’s Ministry | What Does This Look Like?