Insight from a Children's Pastor & Awana Commander

Non-Negotiable: Relationships

Recently I posted about the non-negotiables of an effective ministry. This is an expanded look at one of those non-negotiables.

There was a youth that had a serious health issue in our church. One night it was very serious and I was at the hospital with the parents to pray with them and help comfort them. As the morning approached, I had to leave to run media for a one day conference at the church. When the speaker arrived, I let her know that if I was on the phone, or seemed distracted when she looked up at the sound booth, that it was because of this youth in the hospital in serious condition and I would be looking for a status update on the condition of the youth. The speaker understood and then asked a question that surprised me. She asked, “What’s the connection?”


I then realized that there had to be a connection of some kind for me to care for the youth and their family. There are many things that happen across the world, even in my own neighborhood, where I have no connection and the events do not impact my life. My response to the speaker’s question was simple. The connection was because it was one of the youth in the church.

Relationships are what make the connection. If you have no relationship with the children in your ministry, then when things happen in their life, you probably won’t be there to minister to them because there is no connection. The children may not listen or desire to participate because there is no connection.

If you want to engage the children, parents, and other leaders, you must make a connection with them by building a relationship. One of the best ways I have found to do this is to stop by as they are playing their sport, watching their school play, musical, recital, martial arts belt testing, etc. Show them that you care about them OUTSIDE of the “four walls” of the church. This has had a HUGE impact on the children and families in the ministries where I serve. And when you are in the church, take time to talk to them and show them you care.

It is the little extra effort that you take to show them that you care that will make that connection, build that relationship and impact your ministry more than you may ever know.

Relationships are non-negotiable, after all, that is what God desires, to have a relationship, and open fellowship, with us.

Comment below and let us know what you do to help build relationships and make that connection with the children, families and leaders in your ministry.


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