Children’s Summer Sabbath

During the month of July we will be taking a “Sabbath” from Children’s Worship (Thrive) at 11:00. Preschool Worship (Backyard) will run as usual, with Newborn – Pre-K classes staying in their routine. Now, before we all start thinking that kids and families don’t have to come to church in July let me explain what I mean by “Sabbath” and what “Sabbath” could mean for your family and our church in the coming month.

Sabbath was created by God to keep us rested, full, and holy in the presence of God. Sabbath was created to make space in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls to keep God in God’s rightful place in our lives, at the center. In today’s world we are often told to “make space” or “take a break” or “create sacred time,” but this is something God has already done. God made the space and took a break and created the sacred in the very beginning. All we must do is protect that space and keep that space holy.

In an effort to help us all protect that Holy, God Ordained Space and teach our children the importance of keeping Sabbath, they will be joining us in worship through the month of July as we begin moving through the Ten Commandments together. They will study and begin memorizing the Ten Commandments in Sunday School and will have the opportunity to dig deeper with their parents, grandparents, and extended family of faith during the 11:00 hour.

Parents, as tempting as it might be to stay away from church during this month, I challenge you to give your kids a chance to worship with you.

Studies show that kids learn best by recreating what they see parents and trusted adults do. July will be an opportunity for you, as parents and leaders, to teach your kids why worship is important to you and even point out to them the parts of worship that you enjoy most. Use this chance to ask them what they enjoy about church, the music, the sermons, etc. The best way to teach your kids that something is important to you is to show them. The best way to see what’s making an impact on them is to ask them.

Church, as tempting as it might be to look down on wiggly hands and feet in the pew and chairs around you, I encourage you to take this time to see worship through the eyes of a child.

Jesus reminds us to accept God through pure and childlike faith. What a joyful reminder these kids can be to us as we watch how they react to the music, words, prayers, offerings, and sermons this month!

We also made this choice to help protect our volunteers. We have dedicated volunteers who lead our children in worship every week through music and storytelling. The month of July will be a chance for them to Sabbath as well, to recharge and refill in worship with their families so that we can all come back strong in August. We never want to take people for granted, and instead hope to pour into their lives so they can pour into others.

Similar to the Worship Bags we had available to children at Christmas and Easter, we will have Worship Bag Stations set up outside of the Sanctuary and in the FLC to help kids experience the services on their level. There will be some staple items, as well as some rotating items. Grab a bag and fill it with what your child wants to use each week. Take it home with you, or place anything unused back in the bins after the service.

I am looking forward to how God moves in the life of our church this month.

I love our church! Don’t you?

In Grace,

Annie Sutton
Children’s Pastor
Johns Creek Baptist Church

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