For the busy KidMin Leader during the holiday season, it can be easy to feel like you’re on the outside looking in, watching everyone else enjoying the festivities. After all, it’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year! Let your Heart be Light! Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas! Joy to the World! These are the lyrics that run through our heads this time of the year — songs of joy and merriment, fun and ease, peace and love.
But for the KidMin Leader — be that a children’s pastor, minister, or director, a division coordinator, or a head volunteer — we watch everyone indulge in holiday cheer, family-time bliss, and vacation days, while we are holding crying babies who are up too late on Christmas Eve because five volunteers cancelled, chasing sugar-filled kids, and missing out on a distraction-free Worship service.
Here are a few ways to avoid the KidMin Blues during the Christmas Season:
1. Sabbath regularly.
This may not be on Sundays for you — and certainly not during planned festivities you are in charge of — but you still need to rest in the Lord regularly. Commit yourself to this and when it’s your day to take off, truly rest. Spend time in the Word, listen to worship music — even Christmas music — and trust that God is in control, not you.
2. Work hard so you can rest well.
Plan something that you can look forward to after YOUR role is complete. For example, after all the parties, frantic volunteer recruitment, Christmas Eve service, and so on is over — have something planned that is just for you. This may be time with family (even if it’s a little later than everyone else), a vacation, quiet time at home, or fun with friends — keep your eye on the light at the end of the tunnel. When that special time comes, truly engage in that time and be present with the people you love.
3. Know that the fruit of your labor will be blessed.
God has called you to His purposes and He will use every bit of the work and effort you do in His name for His glory. He sees all the extra hours, phone calls, shopping trips, skipped meals, and hours on your feet that no one else does. You are His child and Christmas is for you too — just maybe in a different way.
So, bring the JOY — and delight in the fact that you GET to be the bringer of the joy, setting up experiences for families to know the true joy of Christmas — Jesus!
What other ways can we help one another avoid the KidMin blues at Christmas?
Jana Magruder serves as the Director of Kids Ministry Publishing. Jana, her husband, and their three kids moved to Nashville from Austin, Texas where she served as the director of children’s ministry at the west campus of Austin Stone Community Church. Jana brings a wealth of experience and passion for kids, kids ministry, and the local church.