There is a catchphrase in the kidmin world that children's pastors sometimes use. They say "We want church to be the best hour of every kid's week."
I want the best hour of their week to be outside the church walls, where their faith collides with the real world and their faith becomes real and strong. I want the best hour of their week to be with their mom and dad, learning and growing in Christ together, or on the playground, sharing their faith with their friends, or praying on their own, outside of church.
One mom recently shared a story of her 4 year old going through devotions with her, and putting his lesson into practice in his everyday life, and what an amazing moment it was when he truly GOT it and lived the lesson out! Another mom shared how her preteen daughter spent her whole lunch period sharing the Gospel with a non-Christian friend. Another mom shared that her 1st grade son asked his best friend for the first time if he was a Christian, then spent his recess witnessing to his friend... a 1st grader! Another mom shared how her 5th grade daughter got a word of PROPHECY for her mom, and how God had given the daughter a Scripture verse for her mom!! These stories are amazing!! I want times like THESE to be the best times of each kid's week!
I'm not saying I don't want kids to have a great time in church. We always want them to love church, and love learning and growing together! I want more than just fun. My prayer is for something more. Something that will carry over through the church walls and outside the church doors, when their relationship with God leaves the bounds of the church and infiltrates their world and impacts our world for God.
We have fun in kids church. But the goal is not to just have fun, but to help kids encounter God, so He can change their lives and change the world through them. That is my hope and my prayer as a children's pastor.