Category Archives: Youth Ministry

Church is not fun

I am not quoting anyone. I am making a statement about reality. I am also making a statement about the way it is supposed to be: church is not meant to be fun.

I often encourage children to stay for the whole service, even while I preach. One simple reason I encourage that is because it seems to communicate something very contradictory when I say, “the preaching of God’s Word is the most important time of the week for you,” in one breath, and “ok, kids, go away while I preach” in the next.

Probably the biggest reason in anybody’s mind as to why they might be hesitant to force their child to sit through a sermon is because they think their child will not enjoy it. Just a few thoughts in response to that:

  • Teach them what to enjoy. We enjoy whatever we like. Teach your kids to “like” God’s Word
  • “Force” your kids to sit through sermons in the same way you “force” them to eat vegetables or go to the doctor for shots or do homework; those are not necessary evils!!! Those are necessary goods!
  • Ten years of seeing adults revere God’s Word will do more to teach kids about God’s Word than ten years of children curriculum. I do not remember hardly anything from “children’s church” growing up. But I can remember my dad’s desire for me to be in the Word. I remember the seriousness of worship services (I also remember being in churches where skits were more attractive than the preaching, and what harm that did to my soul).
  • Gospel preaching is what saves people. Period. Why would you not want them to be under gospel preaching?
  • Do not sell your kids short by thinking church needs to be fun for them. Fun is not the only good in life. I do not want anyone to be drawn to our church by “fun.” Teach them that church is not fun. But it is good.

Youth Ministry (Ephesians 6:1-4)

Make disciples of all children:

  1. Help them obey God (1-3)- you need to help them SEE that there is a God to be obeyed; Paul quotes from the Ten Commandments; WHEN your children disobey you, you must help your children feel the same guilt a murderer or adulterer feels before God
  2. Fathers must be good husbands (4)- the reason Paul only needs to address fathers is that he assumes fathers will be living out Ephesians 5.22-33 well; he also assumes mothers will be submissive to how their husbands lead in raising the children; so he can rightly call children to obey parents, but he needs only address fathers.
  3. Do not give children a choice (4) as far as who they should follow, because they will follow someone.  Everyone thinks you need to let children make their own choice about religion.  They think you will provoke them to rebel if you force-feed them Christianity.  BUT PAUL SAYS THE OPPOSITE!  He says bring them up in the discipline and instruction of Jesus Christ or else they will become angry children.