We stand at the base of our mountains and stare up at the daunting climb. We can feel the breath-taking vastness of the summit and taste the crisp air of the peak if we close our eyes just long enough. But sometimes doubts and fears creep in when we consider the long journey ahead. No matter what mountain we are given, the climb is a difficult one if we choose to walk it alone. Fellow traveler, let me urge you, do not walk alone.
In leadership it can feel like you walk many nights by yourself, but to lead, and lead well, always involves community. Life is not meant to be lived unaccompanied. We know this in our head but we do not always hold this in our heart. Serving in leadership, whether you’re called the “teacher”, the “minister”, the “volunteer” or the “pastor” can often feel like you’re standing by yourself. When your hands are empty after begging for volunteers, when your emails receive no reply, when your prayers seem to be returning void…it can feel like you’re alone.
Brothers and sisters, let me urge you, feel not alone; be not alone. Be comforted that Christ never leaves you and be then compelled to find close, tangible, encouraging community around you. God’s word shows us this. Think of Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 which says, “Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts. For if either falls, his companion can lift him up; but pity the one who falls without another to lift him up.”
In my summers with CentriKid, I’ve come to know the great value of community. The sense of belonging and purpose that comes with being on a camp team is unmatched, but that can leave one feeling out of sorts when the camp season expires. In reflection on my time as a camp director, I can see times where my leadership was grown and my capabilities were tested. The community that surrounded me always made the difference. Thinking on this and looking at my life in the day-to-day, here is what I’ve found for practical leadership tips in this journey:
Inside your church
You need a flock of similar experience and beliefs who can understand your needs, desires, and utmost prayers.
Outside your church
You need folks of similar environment who can understand daily struggles and lend a simple, caring hand in the everyday.
You need the few who can sit beside you when there is no understanding to be found. There needs to be unquestioned reliability, vulnerability, and trust here.
Reach out to find men and women in these areas of your life to be your people. Community is built upon the common ground of trust. Rest in and trust that your sojourners will support you no matter the valley or the peak. The people you find at your side have faced their own mountains and have much to teach you as you journey together. As “the leader” you don’t need to shoulder the weight of your mountain climb alone. Remember that even our Lord didn’t walk solo. You need to rely on and rest in the comfort of community.
Remember that the Father marked your path, the Spirit walks with you, and the Savior has already conquered this mountain. Walk in community with those who remind you of this. They will be Jesus to you in the valleys.
Your role is important in the development of kids who seek the Lord, but its not designed to be the only spiritual leadership that kids get. In conversations at camp this summer, a lot of kids ministry leaders expressed the feeling that parents just expect them to handle the spiritual training of kids. Here are 5 tips to help parents lead kids spiritually.
Use your platform to influence parents and kids in your ministry so families grow together and spend time at home talking about the things of God. This causes deeper learning and can help move Bible lessons from single stories they hear at church to transformational encounters with God’s Word in their homes with their parents.
Ahhhh…it’s the first day of fall! The cooler weather, the corn mazes, pumpkin patches, and flannel shirts..what a good time of the year. What could make it any better? Playing Fall Fest OMC of course!
We have many versions of OMC, but some of my favorites are the seasonally-themed editions. They bring the fun of OMC that we play at camp into the rest of the year and what is happening at the time. Here is how to create a Fall Festival themed OMC at your church or ministry.
First, if you do not have the official OMC game yet, you’ll want to get one of those! You can find it online here if you need to get it. There are two full editions available. You can choose if you want the “Yellow Edition” or “Messy Edition”–or even better get both to have at the ready at any time!
Once you have the digital version of the OMC game, you want to access the Fall Fest edition. With these combined versions, you will be good to go. Each edition will provide you with instructions on what supplies are needed, as well as how many cards to print, and the overall setup of the field.
A few ideas to really sell the theme:
We hope you have a great Fall Fest OMC! We would love to see how it went. Email us your pictures and fun stories to firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to check out our other special editions as well as some FAQs about OMC at centrikid.com.
Summer has come and gone, and it was a huge success! We couldn’t make it happen without our awesome CentriKid staffers. They commit their whole summers to early mornings, the Monkey Shuffle, and most importantly, sharing the gospel with kids! We love our staffers, and they’ve given us a little insight as to why they love working for CentriKid!
→ “Serving at camp is a great experience that will change your life forever. Not only do you grow spiritually, but you grow as a person and meet incredible life long friends.” -Emily T.
→ “Camp is a life-changing experience that pushes you out of your comfort zone in the most fun and interesting way to help children learn about the gospel.” -Abby W.
→ “It’s the best possible way to spend your summer! You get to lead 3rd-6th graders in games and activities all while connecting it straight back to the gospel. I can’t really think of anything at camp that doesn’t have some kind of link to scripture. It’s a lot of hard work, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything, because the Lord gets to speak through me to hundreds of kids that get to hear all about Christ and what He’s done for them.” -Hannah M.
→ “It is the most rewarding experience you can ever have. Serving at CentriKid is not just working camp, it’s a ministry where you have the opportunity to serve churches, be intentional with kids, and share the gospel to kids for the glory of Christ.” -Jacob S.
→ “You learn so much about yourself and your relationship with Christ. If you love kids and want to serve God through that, camp is where you need to be.” -Hannah H.
→ “CentriKid Camps is the opportunity of a lifetime where all you get to do is share the message of the Gospel to some excited kiddos. It is high energy, phenomenally fun, and will without a doubt be the best summer of your entire life.” -Mikala C.
→ “Working CentriKid is the best way to spend your summer. You get to share the Gospel on a regular basis and make lifelong friends on your team as well. It’s a lot of work, but it’s all worth it when you have a camper that gets what you’re talking about in Bible study, recreation, tracks, etc. I wouldn’t want to trade the past three summers working with CentriKid for anything else.” -Tyler B.
→ “Serving at camp was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. There is no better way to spend your summer than teaching the gospel to kids in the most fun ways possible.” -Olivia G.
→ “It is the greatest summer of your life and working harder than you thought possible while getting to share the love of Jesus with hundreds of kids.” -Ryan H.
→ “Camp is amazing! This has been something that I have wanted to do for a long time but was always scared that I was not good enough. I am so glad that I did it, because I have never felt closer to God, and I think this is an experience that everyone should have!” -Maggie W.
We think everyone should have this kind of experience, so if you are 18 and one year removed from high school and love sharing the gospel with kids, apply to be a CentriKid staffer now and watch what God can do through you!
This past summer, we LOVED teaching kids about how the armor of God is real and powerful, although it us unseen. Hundreds of kids made life-changing decisions because of what God did at camp. One of our favorite parts of camp was the Unseen Theme Series: an awesome video series that illustrated the main points of each day!
In the Unseen Theme Series, we followed the story of Chris as she prepared to meet her cousin, Avery, who she knows is not a Christian. Through the help of a new friend Jan, she learns that the armor of God is powerful and can give her the strength, peace, and truth she needs to boldly share her faith with her cousin.
Check out the 2016 CentriKid Unseen Theme Series below! Let us know what you think!
We hope you loved watching the story of Chris, Jan, and Avery! We are already preparing for our 2017 Theme Series video for Adventure Awaits: Follow the One True Light! We hope you plan to join us! You can find our dates and locations here and register online, or register at 1-877-CAMP-123. For more information about Adventure Awaits, check out this blog!
Happy Labor Day!
I hope that you are enjoying a relaxing day off from school or work. Labor Day means that the summer is coming to a close and that cooler weather is coming soon. With that in mind I want to take this time to thank a very important part of CentriKid, our amazing staff! As you spend the day on the lake, catching up on your favorite Netflix show, or sleeping in we hope that you are resting in the fact that you are greatly valued. CentriKid would not be what it is without our staff. Over and over again we hear that the intentionality of CentriKid staff is one of the best parts of camp.
These young men and women work extremely hard to make sure that bible study rooms and the rec field are set up and ready for kids to learn about the gospel. They never miss an opportunity to talk with a kid to ask about their day and see what they are learning. We believe that ministry happens best in the context of relationships and these staffers are wonderful at building relationships with kids at camp. Whether it is at a meal time or walking across campus these staffers they are taking time to invest in kids lives every possible minute. There are a lot of ways that these young adults could spend their summers and we are beyond thankful for their dedication to the kingdom work that happens through CentriKid because of their work. I believe that we have the very best young leaders who serve in our camps.
Thank you, Centrikid staff for your energy, hard work, dedication, heart, and above all your passion for sharing the gospel with kids and adults who come to CentriKid. Your kingdom work does not go unnoticed and I hope that you know how incredibly thankful the CentriKid office team is for every single staffer that spends their summer to serve the Lord. Hundreds of kids came to Christ this summer and even more deepened their relationship with our savior. May the Lord bless you as you continue to serve in your school or workplace this fall. CentriKid staff, you are the best of the best and we hope that you understand the depth of our gratitude and understand that they impact of your service is eternal.
Happy Throwback Thursday! We had an INCREDIBLE time at CentriKid 2016!
Do you remember our key verse?
“Pray also for me, that the message may be given to me when I open my mouth to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel.” Ephesians 6:19
We had such an amazing time at CentriKid 2016, and we are hard at work making CentriKid 2017 even bigger and better! Check out the spiritual direction of CentriKid 2017 “Adventure Awaits” here!