Christian After School Programs: Where is the Gospel In Your Ministry?

As we set up our Christian After School programs there is an excitement, an expectation that we are doing something very worthwhile.

We are going to make a difference!

It is important that we stop ourselves and ask some key questions.

  • What is the most important outcome of your ministry?
  • How will you get to that outcome?
  • What is the result for the kids if you don’t get to that outcome?

For me what is most important is that the kids and their families will internalize the truths of the Gospel. 

I had a young woman who had been involved in another Christian After School Program tell me.

“The ministry where I serve does tutoring and sticks Jesus in. You do Jesus and stick tutoring in.”

In our enthusiasm it is so easy to get off course.

“In a fair bit of Western evangelicalism, there is a worrying tendency to focus on the periphery. [My] colleague … Dr. Paul Hiebert … springs from Mennonite stock and analyzes his heritage in a fashion that he himself would acknowledge is something of a simplistic caricature, but a useful one nonetheless.

  • One generation of Mennonites believed the gospel and held as well that there were certain social, economic, and political entailments.
  •  The next generation assumed the gospel, but identified with the entailments. 
  • The following generation denied the gospel: the “entailments” became everything. 

Assuming this sort of scheme for evangelicalism, one suspects that large swaths of the movement are lodged in the second step, with some drifting toward the third.”

 The above quote is taken from a great post by D.A. Carson “Put The Gospel At The Center of Your Aspirations.”

Is the Gospel at the center of your ministry – is it the driving force behind everything you do? OR is the driving force the “entailments?” 

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3 responses to “Christian After School Programs: Where is the Gospel In Your Ministry?

  1. Amen, Wanda! I see this danger in special needs ministry, as it can often driven by the actions of the ministry and not the purpose for it. Thanks for this post.

  2. Shannon, thanks for the ah-ha – I would never have put the Special Needs ministry into this category. I can see though how it can be similar. It is a tendency that is there whenever we go to serve those with needs.

    I think it is the enemies subtle way of suggesting we can be a god – that we are capable of fixing the problem. So we take our eyes off of God and become our own God.

    I’ve been writing on this in the Sunday Plus Curriculum – going through the temptations of Jesus has been a real ah-ha. Satan tempted Jesus with a good – you can rule the world right now – but it wasn’t the Father’s will so it would have been sin. I see that a lot in ministering to the poor.

    Sorry for the ramble. 🙂

  3. It was a good ramble. 🙂 I’ll be sharing this post as one of my links in my weekly round-up on Monday – so important!

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