Last year I was really challenged with thinking Orange, specifically as it related to baptisms and children making decisions for Christ. See, I’ve had this baptism class thing down. I’ve been teaching it for years. Between teaching a class full of families to individual kids in my office, I could teach this thing in my sleep. Like I said yesterday, 15-20% of the kids I meet with haven’t yet made decisions for Christ. So I would usually offer an opportunity for kids to make that decision at the end of the class or right in the middle of the discussion if meeting with them one on one.
However, the night before leading my first baptism class at Gateway, I decided to re-write the class. Most of the components I’d been teaching for years stayed the same, but I added a fresh new take on the topic and added a segment I’d never done before. After I’d explained how a person becomes a Christ follower (this is done very carefully and specifically) I back off and let the parents drive. I explain that I’m going to leave the room for 15 minutes for parents and kids to discuss what they’ve heard so far. Parents are given some information with questions to ask to find out where they’re kids are and see if they’ve really made a decision to follow Christ yet. If not, parents are encouraged to pray with their kids if they’re ready. I even script out a simple prayer that parents can use to pray with their kids.
Initially I didn’t like doing this. Why? Because I’m a control freak. By letting the parents (who may have no experience doing this at all) I’m not sure if it was done right if it was really done at all. However, if I don’t let parents take the initiative here, they may not do it one their own. The cool thing is that I still have first time decisions every time I do one of these classes and it’s the parents who are praying with their kids to follow Christ. I’m a believer now. Let you parents drive!
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I’m a Family Ministries Director at a church in upstate, NY.
Is there any chance can get a copy of your baptism class notes? I’d really like to take a look at what you’re choosing to hit on during that time.
Fellowship Church does something similar with their Kid Faith class where they talk about Salvation. They give the parents a “cheat sheet” to go through with their kids. The teachers simply are available to clear up anything that might not be clear.
Henry Zonios last blog post..A Case for Higher Education
This is a great idea! I am looking to transition more of these type of teaching sessions from our Sunday school classes to parent/child sessions. Would love your outline as well. I love the idea of leaving parents and kids on their own to talk through things and then coming back. There’s a safety net for parents.
Bonnie Deroskis last blog post..Bringin’ it to the table…
It’s coming. Stay tuned. I’ll post my notes. I wish I had videotaped my last session… maybe next time.
Thanks for sharing all of this!
I went to the Children’s Pastors Conference in San Diego earlier this year, and one of the most prominent themes in the weekend was the idea of partnering with families (or….the lack thereof nowadays).
I look forward to seeing your notes 🙂
Marcuss last blog post..SVCC Childrenâ€™s Baptism â€“ May 31, 2009