Five Ministry Principles
These principles come straight from God’s Word– the same principles that the Bible says every christian needs in their life to grow. Whether a student is 4 years old or 14 years old, we believe that these principles are vital for every christian, so we’ve worked to build them into each of our ministry programs. Each program has each of these 5 fundamental principles, but we work to tailor them to the specific age and development level of the student.
Curriculum Built on the Unchagning Word of God
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”2 Timothy 3:16-17
As students learn and study God’s Word in a deep way, they become equipped for everything that God has called them to do in their lives.
With this as the central truth of our curriculum, our lessons go deep. We don’t shy away from the hard truths of doctrine. Even though we desire to go deep and help students study God’s Word, we always want to connect that teaching back to the student’s heart. Our lessons focus heavily on application and obedience to the Bible. We want to move beyond head knowledge and get to heart and experiential knowledge.
For older students, we also believe in the importance of reading great christian literature. Part of our student ministry program is including great christian books to help students take their knowledge of God’s Word even deeper. Our programs also include a Bible study that students can use throughout the week to connect with each lesson and study on their own. As students study the word on their own they can, “rightly divide the word of truth” (2 Tim 2:15).
Hiding the Truth of God’s Word in Your Heart
In Matthew 4:1-11 Jesus was confronted by Satan. It was Satan’s goal to put Jesus through a time of harsh temptation to get Him to trip up. Each time Satan tempted Jesus, He responded with Scripture. Matthew 4:4 “but Jesus answered, ‘Scripture says…’” We strongly believe that students need to have God’s Word in their hearts and minds. The best way to keep the truth of God’s Word close at hand is to memorize important passages and verses.
Internalizing Scripture in order to connect it to life’s problems is essential for a growing, obedient Christian. The systematic memorization of Scripture will help a student sin less, witness more, and encourage others with the truth of God’s Word. In today’s culture it isn’t popular to memorize. Instead we often favor looking up things online. Our belief is that Scripture is so important, it must be memorized. Scripture committed to memory can be used by the Holy Spirit in many situations in life, from temptation to teaching. Without actually spending the time and work to memorize Scripture, the powerful truths of the Bible are easily forgotten.
Each of our ministry programs memorizes God’s Word in some way. Children memorize a single part of a verse once a month. High School students are encouraged to memorize 24 verses throughout the year. These verses are taken from the Curriculum and lessons so that the truth students memorize reinforces the truth they are hearing each week in the lesson. We provide cards with all the verses for the year that can be purchased in a pack. This helps student easily memorize and review in a systematic way the verses they’ve learned.
Word of Life’s Daily Devotional Tool
It is clear that the Spirit of God uses the Word of God to change the men and women of God. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that students get into the Bible each and every day. We believe the more of God’s Word that get’s into our lives the more we begin to live like Jesus. To help students get into the Bible, Word of Life Local Church ministries has designed a daily devotional tool we call Quiet Time.
The purpose of the Word of Life Quiet Time is to help students develop intimacy with God through prayer and systematic daily reading of God’s word.
The daily journal is built around two key steps. Reading and understanding God’s Word and applying to one’s personal life daily.
Our Quiet Time Diary is a systematic program that touches every book of the Bible every 6 years. This means that students can essentially use the Quiet Time Journal to write their own commentary on the Bible.
We’ve worked hard to build a Quiet Time diary for every age. Students can start at 4 years old and continue through their entire lives. We have Quiet Time for every age group that gradually helps students take their daily time in God’s Word further at each phase in their development.
Children start by reading just one verse with a few statements and a simple task to complete each day. Gradually they progress to harder puzzles and activities. We’ve even recently created a Jr. High version of the tool called the Quiet Time Interactive. It’s designed to walk Jr. High and young High School students through an entire passage of God’s Word. It asks leading questions, has fill in the blanks for them to interact with what they are learning and includes a tweet of the day to share what they’ve learned with friends.
The Quiet Time diary is a powerful tool that every person in the family can use. Each member of the family studies the same passage of Scripture. This can lead to great conversation and family devotions as families interact with God’s word together.
View Quiet Time for Families
Christian Service in the Local Church
“From whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.”Ephesians 4:16
It’s clear here that the church can only grow when every member of the body get’s involved in ministry. We don’t think students are the church of tomorrow; we believe students are the church of today!
The body needs every member serving in their place. God has designed every student with gifts and abilities that He wants them to use for His glory. Each of our ministry programs encourage students not only to attend church regularly for fellowship but also to get wholeheartedly involved in ministry in the local church. Many times students feel they have nothing to offer or need a lot of training and discipleship and so for these reasons are often overlooked. But God’s Word is clear that students need the local church, and the local church needs its students to step up in ministry.
We build ministry into each of our programs. Encouraging children and teens to get involved in ministry in any way they can. We’ve even created a special event called “Engage” designed specifically to help student recognize and utilize their abilities and spiritual gifts for God. Engage is designed to help your students build a traveling ministry team that can take advantage of everyone’s gifts in your church and outside of your church. Thousands of pastors and leaders got their starts at our ministry events. Many times just challenging a student to step up and serve can be a powerful catalyst for life change.
Powerful Accountability Every Week
“As iron sharpens iron,So a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.”Proverbs 27:17
God didn’t design the Christian life to be lived alone.
The purpose of accountability is to maintain faithfulness in all of the other principles mentioned above. When we are left to ourselves our commitment to God’s Word and other principles of growth fade.
Each of our ministry programs has built-in time for Small Groups because we believe in the power of letting other believers into your life. Many times the relationships built during Small Group time go far beyond the weekly time for the ministry program. Small Groups can become, for many students, the only time they see peers actually caring about the things of God and the Bible.
Small groups are a great place for an environment of accountability. Leaders can utilize the power of Small Group time to encourage students to get into God’s Word daily, challenge them on truth learned in the lesson, and to continue to memorize Scripture. It’s a place to build relationships between students and leaders. It also provides a platform for leaders to lead by example as they memorize Scripture and get into God’s Word along with students.
“Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”James 5:16
Small Groups create accountability that cuts two ways. It helps students avoid sin knowing someone cares enough to ask about their lives. But it also helps students to see biblical principles of growth modeled by peers and leaders. It’s a positive peer pressure that God has built into the church as we get into each other’s lives for the purpose of sharing love and growth in our relationship with Jesus.