I distinctly remember when my kids were in junior high and despite me working at church every weekend at all the services, my kids missed attending church for several weeks in a row. Their sports schedules, birthday parties, school projects and desire to sleep in on weekends got in the way of going to church. I remember thinking, “I work at church and it’s still difficult to get my kids to come to church!” As parents, we had good intentions, but life got in the way and before you knew it, another weekend went by and our kids missed going to junior high ministry. My husband and I decided something had to change. We began to look at our weekends differently by making a plan of when we’d be going to church as a family and then filled in some of the other commitments. Did we have to say no to some things? Yes. Was it always easy? No. Did our kids fight it sometimes? Of course! Yet we realized the more valuable commitment was to foster spiritual growth in our kids, develop church friendships and have other caring adults pour into our kids. Hebrews 10:24-25 gives a great charge to parents of teens, “Let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another…”
Ultimately, we want to raise kids who have a vital and growing relationship with God. While we don’t want our children to see church attendance as a box they have to check, we want them to love and appreciate being with a community of believers like described in Acts 2:42-47. I want our kids to recognize the value of corporately worshiping together and being reminded of the powerful gospel of Christ.
Parenting in the junior high years is challenging with busier schedules and so many physical, emotional and social changes. Yet I’m so grateful to be at a church where our tweens are loved and their faith is nurtured through our junior high ministry.
If you are interested, I would love to talk you more regarding service times and getting students to services. Shoot me an email at [email protected]