Do You Desire To Bring Your Child Into The Kingdom?

It's hard enough to be a Christian parent in this world. How do we combat the forces of evil while at the same time raise our children to desire to walk in God's light? By seeking His face, His Word and inspiration from each other as we stumble through this parenting process together. You will find all the instruction, encouragement and resources you need right here at The Greatest Mission Trip You'll Ever Take to help you be the most effective witness to your child that God would have you be. Look around and come back often. Let's learn together.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Resource Friday - Taking A Journey Day With Your Child

photo by Gary Schonleber

As our children enter their teen years it becomes harder and harder to protect them from the wiles of the world. Moral values are being redefined right in front of our eyes, and the traditional roles of men and women are either blurring or being totally redefined.

Opportunities abound for us to develop deep connecting relationships with our children, but sometimes, every once in awhile, we need to have a real man to man or woman to woman bonding experience.

That’s what a Journey Day is. A Journey Day is an opportunity for you to discuss and experience what it means to be a biblical man or woman with your child. It’s a lot more involved than talking over cold pizza and warm soda.

Providence Baptist Church in Raleigh, NC has a free resource available for parents to download from their site, helping you to plan a Journey Day for your son or daughter. In this pamphlet is a plan for determining objectives for your Journey Day, ideas for meeting those objectives and resources to check out for further encouragement and information.

As part of the planning process the folks at Providence recommend considering a challenging task for your child, something to demonstrate growth and passage into manhood or womanhood. Examples include climbing a difficult mountain, rebuilding an engine or completing a significant community project .

It also involves gathering a community of mentors and teachers around your child to affirm his or her unique place in the world, sharing messages of encouragement and affirmation, and even holding a ceremony to officially commemorate passage into manhood/womanhood.

A Journey Day experience would be a memory maker of exponential proportions. Check out the pamphlet and begin planning your child’s Journey Day, even if your child is still wearing diapers. It’ll be something you look forward to for years.

What resources would you recommend? A book, a website, a devotional series, a teaching aid? Leave a comment or email me with your idea.
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6 comments:

WongBWMAGIC said...

This is Redshirtpilgrim from Twitter... just so you know.

My teen years was in the not-so-distant past. So, I fondly remembered my greatest mission trips ever. I say "trips" because I went 3 summers in a row for the very same mission trip.

My mission trip was like this... it was organized by Rev. Michael Cunningham and Rev. Robert Two Bulls Jr. (who's now working in Minnesota now) in the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles.

I was 18 at the time, fresh out of high school and getting ready for my freshman year in college. I had never been away from home by myself at the time. So, my mom talked me into going to that trip in thinking that, "If I can come out of this trip 'alive', dorm life should be a piece of cake for me."

Little did I or my parents know, that mission trip transformed me as a Christian and a minister of God. After all, here's are a few differences I noticed in myself.

1. I have stepped up to be a young adult leader in my church. Before the trip, I would have never envisioned myself doing that.

2. Spiritual maturity- these trips had indirectly led me into meeting other young adult leaders in the Episcopal Churches in LA as well as nationally. These leaders helped me blossom spiritually over these 5 years.

3. Church relocation... this one surprised me in a lot of levels.

a. I thought the first church I settled in the US would be my church for life, barring I have to move to somewhere far.

b. I used to think that Chinese is a necessity for me, in terms of language(s) for a service is concerned. Through the search process, however, I found out that was false. It's mainly because my English skills are right on par (if not better) than my Cantonese skills now.

c. Prior ministry experiences are "transferable". I say that because if you are willing to serve, you will give yourself a sense of belonging, as people are accepting you.

d. I was able to use my relocation as a positive, as I am now providing a new perspective for Chinese ministry in the Episcopal Church. At the same time, I am introducing Chinese ministry in my new church as well.

4. Most importantly... my approach to ministry has been changing for the better over the years. After all, although it was 3+ years removed since I participated that mission trip, I had volunteered to do related things to assist the project. After all, my thinking is... that trip has impacted me as a minister, it might impact other potential ones as well. I have also made a pledge to God... I want to be the ultimate example of what a pilgrim coming out of the project should be... a team player with a servant's heart as well as the mentality of "what you learned from the experience is only the beginning, what it matters is if you can also apply it to your daily lives as well as at your church."

I hope you don't mind the long comment. :)

Deb Burton said...

It sounds like your mission trips were God blessed. Not everyone who comes back from one maintains the same level of enthusiasm for the gospel as you did. And now, because of it, you're able to lead, disciple and be a witness to others, all for the glory of God!

For what you've learned over these few short years, I cannot begin to tell you just how much more mature you'll be as you get older. Whether here or elsewhere, the things you learned as a teen will only grow exponentially, and you will be a force to be reckoned with as a vessel for the Lord.

Keep up the good work my friend, and thanks for sharing your thoughts!

WongBWMAGIC said...

You welcome.

I can agree with you there, in terms of people coming out of these trips. It takes a person who's humble and willing to learn to see the deeper meanings of these trips. Without these elements, what they have experienced and learned might have a hard time sticking in their heads.

As for compliments, I really appreciated it. For me, all I need is to equip myself with experience doing different ministries and don't get down on myself if I make a mistake. Sometimes, mistakes can serve as learning experiences.

Of course, me as a leader is still a work in progress. With God's help, hopefully I can be a well-rounded leader in the church in my adult years.

Sharon (sk) said...

I could just hug your neck right now!! This is exactly what I need. I have a twelve year old and a ten year old. They will be 13 and 11 in April. My 12 year old is not your typical 12 year old... she looks much older (she always has since her toddler years) and all of her friends are one to two years older than her. It has never been a problem until now... they are starting to 'date'... we have always taken the stance that she will not date until... well... not sure actually. 16 at the least... but not in the typical wordly sense of 'date'... more like courtship type dating. Anyhow... it is getting hard. Most online blogs for homeschooling mommas are geared towards the little ones. You are a blessing! Truly you are :)

Deb Burton said...

Sharon, I can so identify with you. My daughter just turned 16, but could easily pass for 20. Our rule (my rule, really) was that she couldn't date until she was 16, and she always respected that. She didn't always like it, most especially when she was 13 and 'everybody' around her was dating.

But she committed herself to following Christ at age 13 and developed a conviction of purity for herself. Thus, she is sweet 16 and never been kissed. And proud of it!

I invite you to read her blog post about this subject. Maybe your daughter can draw strength and conviction from it, that she's not the only girl out there who isn't dating. You'll find it here: http://wayofshiloh.blogspot.com/2008/11/sweet-16.html

Sharon (sk) said...

Thank you so much! I'm headed to check it out right now. :)