We at First Baptist Statesboro are excited about Kids in the Word and the potential that it has to lay foundations for Biblical engagement in the lives of the children entrusted to us. Our Sunday School leadership met earlier this year and discussed the concerns that were raised from recent LifeWay research regarding Biblical illiteracy and the need to develop Bible skills in each child. We committed ourselves as Sunday School leaders to lead the charge to engage children in the Kids in the Word Challenge in an effort to engage kids in a lifetime of faith.
We used the model presented by Georgia Baptist Mission Board and tweaked it to meet our specific needs. We chose to present a five month challenge this spring and summer as an opportunity to introduce the challenge and in preparation for a full year challenge in the fall of 2018. Because of our concerns regarding the lack of financial giving among our children we included giving an offering in our initiatives and ordered special envelopes for children that encourage them to bring an envelope along with their Bible to Sunday School each week. These offering envelopes have check boxes to provide accountability in basic spiritual disciplines that are important to spiritual growth. Our Sunday School teachers have embraced the plan and have introduced it to the children and are encouraging their participation. We were excited to find a simple on-line plan that would guide our families through reading the book of Luke together. This plan allows the child to color in the block when they have read each passage on the journey.
We have placed great emphasis on being sure that each child has an age appropriate Bible by presenting each new Baby with a New Testament and each First grader with a full study Bible. We have additional Bibles available for teachers to present to children who do not have a Bible and who were not a part of our family of faith at those milestone times in their lives.
We have purchased materials to assist Sunday School teachers in teaching the books of the Bible through music and games and encouraged Sunday School teachers to make learning the books of the Bible a priority in planning introductory activities. Even our preschool classes are exposing pupils to fun songs and activities to help them begin to learn the books of the Bible.
The Kids in the Word challenge has helped us to find focus in our response to the concerns of the LifeWay research. We are thankful for the Georgia Baptist Kids in the Word challenge that has helped us to form an intentional strategy to address our concerns regarding Biblical illiteracy in our children.
Susan Allen, serves as Minister to Children at First Baptist Statesboro. A graduate of Tift College and New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, she is the wife of Ricky Allen, Sr. Associate Pastor at First Baptist. God has blessed their lives with two daughters and three grandsons