God has blessed us richly in this life, and the natural reaction to that blessing should be a desire to give back. The Bible also tells us that God loves a cheerful giver. So, how do you convey that excitement about giving to children and encourage them to give themselves. Obviously, it begins with teaching them the biblical reasons and mandate for giving, but it also helps to inject a little bit a fun into the process. If the Bible tells us that God loves a cheerful giver, there is nothing wrong with injecting some fun and cheer into the actual giving process. By doing so, the children in our ministry get to develop the habit of doing something that God calls us to do, and enjoy the actual giving part at the same time.
With that in mind, our ministry recently ordered some miniature wishing wells from Spiral Wishing Wells to use during our offering time. The wishing wells are those things that you find in malls and at the zoo where you start a coin rolling down a shoot and it rolls around and around until it finally makes its way into the hole in the bottom of the wishing well. I know that every time we pass one, no matter what the cause, my kids empty their pockets and mine of any coins before we can move on. There is just something captivating about watching the coins go round and round. The miniature ones are affordable at only $20-$25 depending on how many you order. We ordered two.
If you attend a large church with a larger budget, the larger wishing wells are available as well, but the small ones work just fine for our purposes.
At the beginning of our offering time, we place the wishing wells at the front of the classroom on either side of the room. We explain why we take an offering every week and why giving is important. We explain what cause their offering goes to, and then we invite kids to come forward and give their offering while some music plays in the background.
The first week we brought out the wishing wells to use in offering, the kids were fascinated with them. They all wanted to rush forward to watch the coins drop into the wishing well, but we only let those kids who had brought offering come forward to use them. By doing so, we have created some additional excitement about giving and encouraged the kids to save their coins to drop in the wishing wells at church to support another child half way around the world.
In the interest of full disclosure, our website is not affiliated with the Spiral Wishing Wells company. That said, if they read this article, I think they should contact Tony to advertise on the site, because I think these wishing wells are an outstanding way for children’s ministries to encourage the habit of giving in the children they minister to.