The moment your child is born you start to pack the bag for when they leave. You will shape who they will become, and eventually they will leave your home. The number of days your child is in your home under your watch are limited.
These are my notes from the final session at the Orange Tour Austin final session. Reggie Joiner delivered this material. I’m writing first person to make the notes more readable, but these are all just paraphrases and quotes of his talk. If I just posted my notes it would be unreadable!
So often we don’t see the impact of what we’re doing in a child’s life. They can’t articulate what’s happening in their life. The change is so gradual you can’t measure it. As time passes parents, teachers, and church volunteers can become discouraged when they don’t see the affect of what they’re doing.
But just because you can’t see the change, it doesn’t mean what you’re doing doesn’t matter!
You can’t see spiritual growth because its spiritual! – Reggie Joiner
If you want to impact a child you need to understand four concepts!
You Need to be There for Significant Moments
If you want to have huge influence on a child, you must be there for the big moments in their life. Unfortunately you can’t predict when they will happen. You have no idea when something huge is going to happen. That’s why you need to be there week after week so you are there when something huge happens!
You Need to Imagine Your Child/Student’s Potential
If you could see where a child is going to be in 20 years, it would drastically change what you do now. If you knew their future struggles, it would change what you do now. If you knew their future strengths, it would change what you do now.
When we can imagine a child’s future potential, you change the way you minister to them now!
The Sooner You Start Investing in Students, The Greater the Return Later!
The moment your child is born, you start to pack their bags. They will leave you eventually. You will shape who they’re going to become, and that starts immediately As teachers and volunteers, we will shape who they become, but eventually they will move on and launch into adult hood. We must be extremely intentional with the limited time we have with them.
Just like with investing, the sooner you start to invest, the greater the return later on. Just like with money, relational invests in a person also compound over time.
Your children love you, they want to play with you. How long do you think that lasts? Soon Jack may not even want you to come to his games. We have a few special years with our children, when they’re the ones that want us around. After that you’re going to be running after them for a bit of attention. It’s so fast Peter. It’s a few years, and it’s over. And you are not being careful. And you are missing it. – Moira Banning from the movie Hook. Peter Pan has grown up and become a workaholic who ignores his kids.
Be careful with this window of time! There will be a time when you won’t be able to be in their physical presence any longer!
What You Do Every Week With Kids and Students Will Keep Your Church From Dying!
When you make kids and teenagers a priority…
- You train the next generation
- You increase your impact in the community
- You prepare to pass off the church to the next generation
What You Do Every Week in a Kid or Student’s Life Lasts Longer Than You Do!
Your investment in the next generation will be your legacy. Often we confuse legacy and inheritance. We think our legacy is the money we leave behind, but that is our inheritance.
Legacy is what we invest in people. The message that they continue after we are gone.
THREE HIGHLY ENCOURAGING THINGS TO CONSIDER:
- You will die sooner than you think.
- You will be forgotten.
- You will only be remembered by the people who know you now.
If you live your life to be remembered, your life won’t matter.
If you live to leave a legacy, you make an incredibly difference.
You Only Get This Year to Invest Your Kids at This Age
How are you investing in the lives of the people around you? Right now is your chance to leave a legacy!
Think about it!
You only get to know your child as a one year old when they are one year old. Then you can only remember what it was like. You can’t influence that year ever again.
You only get to know your child as a seven year old when they are seven years old. Then you an only remember what it was like, and you can’t influence that year ever again.
From the time your child is born you start packing their bags! Do not waste now! A legacy is more about being dependable than remarkable!