All the pages have dropped from the calendar. A crazy, memorable, weird year is over. A decade has passed. We are staring into a future, 2020, and I hope as we look into it we can do so with clear 2020 vision. There is so much for us to root ourselves in as we go into this new future. There are a few things I’d like to see us understand better.
Here in our church we’ve increased our staff. In the past year, we’ve had a change of youth pastors. The old has gone, the new has come. Buddy Duke and his family have joined us, and Buddy is doing a super job relating to teens and connecting them to Christ. And just this past Sunday, as I am writing, you voted to call Buddy’s wife, Misty, to join our staff as Children’s Minister. In that role, Misty will have lots of responsibilities and changes will be made.
The position of First School Director will be rolled into the Children’s Minister position. No longer will First School and our children’s ministry look and feel like two different entities. They will be one position and one ministry. Misty will be on that hall, dealing with parents and children not as the First School Director but as the First Baptist Church Children’s Minister.
Our children’s ministry should also see an increase in activity and outreach. Many, many plans have yet to be made, but more should be and will be done. Much of that depends on Misty. She’ll put her own stamp on all of these things.
But so much depends on you, too. We do not hire people to do ministry for you. We bring people on staff to help you do the ministry of the church better than we were doing it. It is the work of pastors and teachers, according to Ephesians 4, to equip God’s people for the work of doing ministry so the body of Christ may be built up. “Built up” means stronger. And “built up” means bigger. We want you to do better ministry to children and better ministry to more children. But keep in mind, it is your ministry, and it is yours to do.
This means some things. We need you to teach children in Sunday School. We need you to step up and sponsor and chaperone children’s ministry activities and mission projects. We need you to lead children’s worship on Sunday morning. We need you to reach out to young families who have children. We need you to include them and fold them into your family. Get to know them, their names, their likes, dislikes, everything, and make them part of your family.
2020 can be a great year for us. The world around us will be in turmoil. We can already see that. Stresses of all kinds will try to fracture our nation and us. We will be strongly tempted to take sides in battles the Egyptians fight among themselves, but we must remember we do not rest our identity or our hopes on what country we are from, who our leader is, or whether or not we are in power or have no power at all. We are the Church, the people of Jesus, and we are here to change the world by being the one place where everyone is loved.