It is a very real fact that the kids of the current generation are used to being over-stimulated. From the way they are being taught at school to the television shows they watch and the games they play on mum or dad’s iPhone, the digital age means that there are so many sources of instant information screaming for their attention.
While the church may not have the power to change this, I believe we can do our part to redeem it, by being intentional about how we structure our children's services to best deliver the word of God; in a way that is consistent with the way things are communicated outside the church.
Matthew 13:34 says “Jesus spoke all these things to the crowd in parables; he did not say anything to them without using a parable.” Whenever Jesus taught groups of people, he used stories, hiding the godly principles he was teaching within language and context that the people could relate to and emotionally connect with.
Since midway through last year, we have been adapting our C3 Kids services to make better use of drama and media to teach kids. By creating characters that 'live' the stories and principles we are trying to teach, we are drawing children into a dynamic atmosphere in which they are more stimulated and engaged than they would be with just a ‘talking head’ preaching to them from a pulpit. The positive response has been overwhelming.
We began this approach last year in our primary services, structuring them so that the message we want kids to leave with is being conveyed in every element of the service. After games and worship a ‘preach’ from one of our pastors or leaders, is sandwiched between two scenes with our characters, who help kids to understand the life application of what we’re teaching.
We are especially excited about our preschool services. Our creative and preschool teams have been collaborating and working hard to develop a multimedia experience for our 2-5 year olds. Each week children are safely escorted to a special show room, where through the use of storytelling they go on adventures. Each week they are guided by our host, Miss Ash and they meet Chippy the Squirrel and his friend Freddy, a couple of loveable puppet characters who always seem to be getting into sticky situations.
Combining on-stage performances and live worship with video content and animation, we have created a powerful, interactive method of imparting the word of God to our little ones. We’re so excited to see where this process takes C3 Kids as a ministry, as we continue to develop the use of storytelling in our services.
Follow us on Instagram (@c3kids) to see our progress as we work to create the best experience for our kids.