#1 – They lie. They’ll tell you that they’re not tired, that they don’t need help, that they were “in the neighborhood” when they just dropped in to watch your child play soccer. It’s all a lie, I tell you!
Kids ministers will put their very lives on hold at times to show kids how much they care. Although they can’t be at everything, they’ll do their best to let kids know they matter!
#2 – They don’t believe everything your children tell them! (At least not about you!) Sure, sometimes there are big problems at home, but they know that sometimes it’s just a kid being a kid who either has a big imagination or is just mad at mom or dad.
They do believe you’re a good parent who’s trying everything you can to be the best parent you can be. But if you need help, they’re ready with open arms, open minds, and even some good biblical advice! They’re also praying that you don’t believe everything your kids say about them!
#3 – The act like it’s all fun and games! But, although it looks like they’re just having fun, they take their ministry seriously! Some of the things you might think are frivolous, silly, and even outrageous are the very things it may take to connect with a child.
Kids ministers will do whatever it takes to share the gospel—including a pie in the face if it comes down to it! They might even encourage you to join along if they think it will help you connect with your child!
#4 – They NEED to be told what to do! As much as kids ministers would like to know everything about each and every child, they just can’t. If your child did something that should be celebrated, let your kids minister know! If your child is struggling, let your kids minister know! They truly care, but they can’t know until someone tells them!
In the same light, they might need to tell you things about your kids you don’t want to hear and well, sometimes that’s hard to do. If your kids minister needs to share some news with you, know that he’s most likely agonized and prayed over it before coming to you.
#5 – They’re frustrating! But it’s because they love your kids. No, I mean they REALLY love your kids. And because they do, they make some decisions that might frustrate you—annoying things like having a security system that makes you spend a couple of extra minutes on a Sunday morning to sign in your child. It’s because they want your children to be safe–they really don’t enjoy making you late for small group or worship! Or, asking that you keep your kids home if they’re sick (even if you did give him acetaminophen this morning and he’s not running a fever anymore)! It’s because they love the other kids in the ministry as well as yours!
Every decision, policy, and standard put in place for your kids ministry is there for a reason—because your kids minister loves your kids. So, before you rant, ask yourself if there is truly a problem that needs to be addressed or is it just an inconvenience for you? Is it just a whim that your kids minister dreamed up or is it best for the kids? Then, go back and tell your kids minister how much you appreciate that he loves your child!
Most of all, parents need to know that kids ministers are worth their weight in gold! They work long and hard hours, often with little pay. Good ones are getting harder and harder to find, so consider yourself blessed if you have one in your church. Take care of them and let them know you love them before someone comes and takes them away!
Klista Storts serves as an Editorial Ministry Specialist for Lifeway Kids. Before coming to Lifeway, she served as the Weekday and Preschool Specialist at the Tennessee Baptist Convention and as Director of Preschool Ministries at churches in Oklahoma and Tennessee. Klista has a passion for equipping leaders to share the love of Christ and lay foundations for conversion in the lives of kids.