Folks choose to attend that convention for a variety of reasons. In the actual meeting, business of the denomination takes place. Reports are given and decisions are made. Some probably think that’s the most important part of the week. I noticed, as I stood and watched people in the exhibit hall, that most people really make the decision to attend because of fellowship!
People need the opportunity to be with other people who think like they do (or at least think a little bit like they do). People enjoy the opportunity to see old friends, meet new friends, become reacquainted with people who have impacted their lives, glean from those who’ve “been there/done that,” and generally share some of the same goals, desires, and hurdles. People want to belong to a group … some are calling it a “tribe!”
Kid’s ministers need to belong, too! We need to have a tribe that we can go and feel a kinship; a group of like-minded and similar-goaled people who we can trust and grow with. As a Children’s minister, finding people in my area to talk with, bounce my ideas off of, and sometime complain to, was invaluable! I wouldn’t trade my friendships with Susie, and Cindy, and Donna, and Renee, and Kim, and Clara Mae, and Susan … for anything! They were the people who got me through the early years. They were the people I called when I was “on the ledge.” They were the folks who shared with me ideas and resources that would make my ministry better. They are still the folks that I share my ministry with. They are part of my tribe. Thanks!
Here’s the bottom line — we all need to belong to something. We all need help at some point. We all need to know there are others out there who are “doing it,” too! We all need friends in ministry.
LifeWay’s Kids Ministry Conference might be the place for you to find “tribe.” Each year we come together to learn, to network, to encourage each other, and to worship as Kids Ministers. This year we’ll be in Nashville, TN on October 6-8, 2014. Join us!
Bill Emeott Since 2003 Bill Emeott has served as a Kids Ministry Specialist for LifeWay. His passions include childhood ministry leadership training and development, leading children’s Bible Study, and being an Uncle! Bill has been teaching children at First Baptist Nashville for ten years.