I am really passionate about “discipline” in ministry. To me (and I think to God), discipline (especially to children and youth) is essential to their spiritual formation. When a student is in trouble, I think their heart is ripe and fertile soil for a “teachable moment.” In other words, discipline equals discipleship.
In a ministry setting, do all the children and youth ministry volunteers have this same perspective? This blog post does a great job consolidating my thoughts:
One of the first things we share with a new volunteer in our Children’s Ministry is our philosophy on discipline in the classroom. It’s really very simple: “We believe that every child has the right to hear the Gospel uninterrupted.” What do we mean by that? Well, first of all we believe that what we are sharing and teaching is incredibly important. Second, we want every child to hear the message. That means we cannot allow one child to prevent others from receiving the message.
Each Sunday morning when I stand before our kids in our large group meeting time I share the same statement: “We have only three rules in Kid’s View and we want you to know all three rules:
Rule Number 1 – Remember why we are here. We are here to meet with others and meet with God.
Rule Number 2 – When someone on stage is speaking you are to be listening. Which means you would not be talking.
Rule Number 3 – Have Fun! If we remember Rule #1 and we practice Rule #2 we will have a great time together.”
Again, I make these same statements every Sunday as a reminder to our kids. They know them so well that they shout the last word of each statement as I say it. Our desire is for every child to hear the message and enjoy their time in Kid’s View. The three simple rules go a long way to help that goal be accomplished.
We also have the Three R’s as our steps for correction when a child does choose to misbehave:
R – Request the behavior stop.
R – Reseat the child in a different area if the behavior continues.
R – Remove the child from the classroom after the first two steps if necessary.
If a child has to be removed the parent is called to the classroom. Rarely does the third R become necessary. Our goal is for every child to hear the Gospel uninterrupted and for them to enjoy their time in Kid’s View!
via CM Buzz