Kidzone Children’s Ministries of New Life Bible Church reached out and shared the love of Jesus with over 700 children in 2016. This year we are specifically praying for each individual child from whatever number of kids God will help us reach and teach about our Savior, Jesus.
As we prayerfully set our numerical goals, we are preparing our outreach events for the summer of 2017. Through six Vacation Bible Schools, multi-sports day camps, a worship arts camp, and a traditional, week-long Summer Camp, we are aiming to serve Christ with an active approach to children’s ministry this year.
Kidzone is committed to teaching the Bible – from the Bible—in a way kids can understand. We specifically open the Bible and read it to kids and encourage them to do the same at home. Our approach is fun, adding drama, object lessons, and excitement to engage kids and imprint the lessons on their hearts. The goal is to make them life-long learners and lovers of Christ, His Word, and His church. We especially want them to honor their parents, love their siblings, and bring light into their communities through service and kindness.
New this year, we are offering the opportunity for up to twelve high-school and college-aged interns to join Kidzone as volunteer staff. These interns will assist us in planning and implementing our summer outreach events as they share the gospel with kids. As role models, camp counselors, worship leaders, and interceders, the interns will not only lead kids to Christ, they will disciple young believers to stand firm in their faith and to share it with others. Coming from our local area and around the world, the individuals who have applied for our summer internship program come with a diverse background and a deep faith coupled with creative energy and contagious enthusiasm. The training we offer to them in children’s ministry is invaluable to their future and the talent they bring to Kidzone is unmeasurable to ours. We might even discover, disciple, and develop New Life’s next Children’s Pastor from this group. This group of young adults will take our children’s ministry to the next level.
Speaking of Next Level, the name of our youth group, the interns will partner with youth workers on a mission trip, at a music festival, and during our Sunday youth nights for junior high and high school students. In fact, a goal of our internship is to expose these students to the workings of Pastoral ministry behind the scenes and center stage, so you might even find an intern on stage leading worship or bringing the Word of God on a Sunday morning.
Budgeting for these outreach events and hosting twelve interns has a cost. That cost has been weighed carefully. The purpose of each event has been clarified with our simple mission statement for the summer “to build faith in Jesus in the hearts of kids.” That objective—building faith in kids—is worth every penny. It is an investment, not an expense. We have applied for a grant and are pursuing corporate sponsors and participating in local fundraisers to cover the costs of this summer of ministry. But there’s a gap from where we are to where we want to be. We need some help.
Jesus once sent Peter to catch a fish holding a coin in its mouth to meet their financial needs (Matthew 17:27). Another time, Peter caught 153 fish in his net during a miraculous, morning encounter with Jesus (John 21:11). The assumption could be made that those fish were sold to provide for the disciple’s future ministry. Lately I’ve been considering how to apply this Biblical example to our situation. Should we host a fish fry to raise funds or drop a hook in some water expecting to find gold in the mouth of our first catch? John 4:19 clarifies how to utilize this fish illustration—Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men. I shouldn’t be looking for hidden treasure in the mouth of a fish, but instead I should look for men and women, followers of Jesus, who will jump on board with the vision of Kidzone and financially support our ministry here. Which brings me to you and to a number God has given me. One, five, three. One hundred and fifty-three. It’s been on my heart and ringing in my ears throughout the past week and just this morning I understood what it meant. I’m looking for 153 people to give $153 to the cause of Kidzone—to the cause of expanding the Kingdom, saving kids, and giving the glory to God. All I’m asking for is $153. It’s not very much in the grand scope of things, but added together it will help us to host the interns, carry out the vision for our summer outreach programs, and build faith in Jesus in the hearts of kids here in our Winnebago area and everywhere we minister.
Will you be one of 153 to give $153 by May 15th? You can even pay in “three easy payments” (LOL) of $51 a month. And of course, we would take any donation you feel led to give, whether it be just a small portion of $153 or if your gift of $153 is multiplied by ten or a hundred.
If you would like to give, you have several options. Drop it in the offering at church with Kidzone on the envelope, mail it to New Life Bible Church, PO BOX 7, Winnebago, IL 61088 with Kidzone on the memo line (checks written to New Life), or go to www.newlifekidzone.com/donate and pay through paypal. You can set up three auto-payments if you choose to break the donation into smaller amounts. I personally ask that you don’t designate your tithe to Kidzone, but give an offering above and beyond your weekly tithe.
God is so faithful, we can’t help but worship Him. Whether you choose to donate to Kidzone or not, please join us in thanking Him for His faithfulness and praying for our summer of ministry. If you would like to learn more about our internship program, you can go to www.newlifekidzone.com/interns. To sign your child up for our events, watch for more information to be released on our Facebook page.
May you be richly blessed today and always. You are a blessing to me.
Director of Women and Children’s Ministries
New Life Bible Church – Kidzone