Put kids and parents in the same room at the same time on a regular basis. I know, I know. We talk about this a lot at Orange. And if you haven’t heard how an environment for parents and elementary-age kids makes a HUGE difference in the strategy of the church, and the lives of families, run, don’t walk to your nearest computer and order a copy of Think Orange. Now.
No, seriously, please. On the other hand, if you’ve already seen what a difference this combination of church and family can do for your entire community, step over here and let me tell you another great benefit from establishing this groundbreaking environment.
IT GIVES CHURCH LEADERS A WHOLE NEW WAY TO REACH THE COMMUNITY!
I directed a Family Experience for seven years. One of my favorite things about being a part of a vital environment for parents and kids was the ability to interact with the community on a whole new level. Be honest. When you do a Family Experience you have to go out and ask questions that no other ministry gives you a chance to ask. For example, “Where can I get a set of size 72 polka dotted boxer shorts?”
While out gathering props (model boats, oversize hats, used sports equipment, old car parts, huge quantities of bubble wrap, leaky plumbing pipes, etc.), I was often asked, “Why do you need this stuff anyway?”
Aha! What an opportunity to tell them about the most innovative, family-friendly environment in town.
I write scripts, so here’s the script for this situation:
YOUR LINE: Do you have kids or grandkids?
(Get subject’s response.)
YOUR LINE: Why don’t you come check this out? This month we’re talking about creativity (or gratitude, or knowledge, or whatever virtue you’re focusing on that particular month).
Now, when you read through your next prop list, think about the people you are going to meet as you get out there and look for a thousand feet of cardboard.