Do you remember when people used to answer a ringing phone with no clue of the caller’s identity? Do you recall the time when driving to any new destination without a map was unthinkable? Or can you imagine an era where family members did not have to compete with television, tablets, or telephones to communicate with one another? Well...those days are gone; and if we want to remain relevant in Children’s Ministry, then we need to put on our wetsuits and ride this digital wave. It’s unavoidable. The digital age is here and it’s not going anywhere!
Technological advancements are ever- growing and transforming the way we do everything from reading our bibles to learning in schools. The bottom line is that our children are growing up in a world dominated by technology, and if we want to stay connected with them then we better plug in.
So what is your mindset towards the digital age? As far as we’ve come, I believe that there are still too many churches that have yet to fully embrace digital technology. When it comes to the digital age, we should maintain a willingness to leverage it to achieve our ultimate goal of reaching boys and girls with the hope of Jesus Christ. It is of vital importance that we not force our old methods on the next generation. Besides, there’s a lot we can learn from them!
Jesus himself warns us of the folly of approaching a new age with an antiquated mindset:
“No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse. Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”
Matthew 9:16-17 (New International Version).
The point is this, if we close our minds to the impact the Digital Age is having on our kids, then we may find that our old school methods have the unintended consequence of repelling them away from us, our churches, and our message.
If you are new to this digital age stuff, take heart! There’s no time like the present to open your mind and leverage it in your Children’s Ministry for the glory of God. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to help you get started…
Don’t underestimate the children around you, these digital trainers have a lot to teach us about digital technology, so ask them!
To enhance your digital literacy, consider resources like books, audio options, and self-help videos found on various media platforms such as YouTube.
When we infuse things like popular apps, video games, and social media into our Children’s Ministries, it expands our reach and impact among the digital natives that populate our churches.
Consider using digital technology as an organizational tool to more effectively communicate, coordinate, and identify trends within your Children’s Ministry.
Be intentional about learning the basic skills of digital media around you. This can be a daunting task but no matter what, DON’T QUIT!