Well, it’s official. The holiday season is officially upon us. Stores are decked out in green and red. Lights are strung on houses all over the neighborhood. The neighbor down the street has 42 of those blow up Santas and Polar Bears in his front yard. Prices have been marked up to allow for deep holiday discounts. Yes, ‘tis the Season indeed.
This December though, we are partnering with Michael Chanley and CMConnect.org for a different kind of giving. One of the things that has impressed me the most since joining the online children’s ministry community is the willingness to share and help one another in the shared vision of reaching kids for God’s Kingdom. Michael is a shining example of this with CMConnect.org which is a social networking site designed to allow those in children’s ministry to collaborate. This month Michael has decided to highlight and encourage an amazing gift which is freely available to all who work in children’s ministry. That gift is the online community of people who are passionate about children’s ministry and passionate about equipping others who work in children’s ministry. And, here is the really exciting part, that community can grow stronger and deeper with your involvement.
When Michael first told me about his idea for this month, my mind immediately went to 1 Corinthians 12:12-20:
12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit.
14 For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? 18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.
Just like God gave us all a particular part to play in the Body of Christ, we all have something to offer to the online kidmin community, and when we choose not to participate we deprive the remainder of the body of the role God made us to play. So, this month, we here at Kidmin1124.com want to join with CMConnect.org to encourage you to give the gift of your involvement in the online children’s ministry community.
Here are some ways you can get involved:
- Find some good children’s ministry blogs to follow.
- Read some articles on those blogs and leave your comments. This is your chance to engage with some real leaders in the field of children’s ministry.
- Get involved in children’s ministry forums. Ask and answer questions. There are essentially three sets of children’s ministry forums which you should join (all free):
- Join CMConnect.org or get reengaged with the community. CMConnect.org is the facebook of children’s ministry without all the fluff and with tons of practical information and networking.
- Start your own blog to share your thoughts with the world. If you do this, make sure to let me know so I can add you to my reader. There are two easy, and free ways, to do this.
- Encourage your volunteers and others you work with at church to also join the online community. The larger the community gets, the better we will all be for it.
Michael also has a series of events planned at CMConnect.org to help you Give the Gift of Community. Those include:
- Weekly chats at 2:00 PM (EST) on Tuesdays and Thursdays and 10:00 PM (EST) on Thursdays. This month’s chats will focus on Giving the Gift of Community including:
- The Value of blogging
- Engaging in the online community
- How to support and encourage your online community
- What you can do for your online community and what your community can do for you
- How to retain what you are leaning from your online community
- Who do I follow? I can’t do it all!
- I am learning but how do I make the changes
- Network your online community
- Praying for your online community
- Michael also does periodic radio broadcasts on CMConnect.org some of which I am sure will focus on this topic this month.
- Check out the forums and blog on CMConnect.org for more articles and discussion related to these issues.
I hope you will all join us this December as we remember the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and as we collaborate together to Give the Gift of Community and make the children’s ministry world stronger and better off for it.