1/168: Children's Ministry Hours Per Week

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I recently attended the Connecting Church and Home conference (read our live blog) back in March.  While there, I saw a man wearing a black t-shirt with white embroidered 1/168.  I was immediately intrigued by the small fraction.  Given the context of the conference, I figured it had something to do with student ministry.  My suspicions were confirmed when I started talking with the gentleman wearing the shirt.
1/168 simply puts in a visible fractional form what many of us struggle with in children’s ministry.  There are 168 hours in a week.  If we are lucky, we get one hour a week with the children.  Simply put, what are the parents doing in the remaining 167 hours?
I confess that I actually do a better job as a parent to my three sons in the 167 hours than I do challenging the parents of my children to redeem the time.  While I am sure you have prayed and asked others how to get parents more involved in your children’s spiritual life as well as your ministry, have you ever considered just how much you are up against?
Seriously, if you get 1 hour a week (sometimes 3!) in a church setting to teach about the things of God and the world gets the remaining 167 hours, then how can we compete?  It is one thing to rely on the Holy Spirit to lead and guide your ministry.  It is something completely different to think and believe that we, through the Spirit’s power, can renew a child’s mind in one hour increments each week. Romans 12:1-2 rings more true in our area of ministry.
How have you been able to overcome the world in your ministry?  We would love to know your thoughts on how to incorporate your parents more and to challenge them to “teach their children diligently the things of God.”

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