Hope in Action is a member of the Micah Network
28 September 2013
Releasing Children to Discover God’s Purpose
4/14 Window Missiology Conference
A biblical, ethical and respectful Kingdom-view of children requires that they be valued as more than a strategic means to church growth or as missionary targets. In human essence and as agents of transformation, children are not that different from grown-ups. Yet, adults have a responsibility toward and with children for their holistic nurture, preparation, empowerment and protection, which demands that children be present, active, included and truly heard.
Scripture illuminates a proper and godly posture toward children and their place in God’s greater narrative in 1 Samuel 1-3; the story of Hannah’s anguish, the gift of a son, and Samuel’s early years at home and in the temple. The narrative relates a means of releasing children to discover God’s purpose and for proper adult understanding of children’s value as agents of transformation. It also reflects the principles and cautions of contemporary youth participation initiatives. Five principles are gleaned through Samuel’s story:
1. Children are to be holistically nurtured throughout childhood;
2. Children are to be active participants in worship and service to God;
3. Children can be called by God and hear his voice;
4. God uses whom he will, including those on the margins of life; and
5. The supreme story of history and life is God’s and we are to envision and empower children as participants in that greater Story.
To read the full document, download the attachment.