9 Things They Didn’t teach Me in College about Children’s Ministry promises “practical advice, inspiring stories, and interesting interviews with others involved in children’s ministry.”
This pocket-sized composition book look-alike is a cute little package, but inside, it’s spot on and sobering. Author, Ryan Frank, strikes a chord with statistics like “the probability of five-to-twelve-year-old children accepting Christ as Savior is 32 percent. That number drops to 4 percent between the ages of thirteen and eighteen.” He then hits it out of the park with,
“The million dollar question in children’s ministry leadership is not about a program, model, or leadership style. It’s this: are kids being changed to become like Jesus?”
Nine easy to read chapters and 125 pages of meat and potatoes stuff, tackle the definition of success in ministry, polishing people skills, working in harmony with the senior pastor, networking, recruiting, training, conflict resolution, budgets, and family ministry.
Each chapter ends with an interview or thoughts from well-known names in children’s ministry. This alone makes the book worthwhile as you feel you are not alone in the trenches. The chapter on networking may be the best information out there on this topic. The first half of the chapter talks about networking for our spiritual development. Just when I thought networking meant filling slots in the nursery, Ryan reminds me that connection refreshes, restores, and renews. The second half of the chapter is about connecting online. I’m a little old-fashioned in thinking that it has to be a phone call or a hand-written note. However, the author shows us creatively how we can use Twitter, Facebook, and text to connect.
Cover to cover, its packed full of information and ideas, resources and encouragement. Little asides, like, 15 ways to pray for the kids in your ministry, are nuggets of gold woven throughout each chapter. The chapter on Staff Infections is invaluable. With suggestions like, “Stay in tune with your senior pastor’s vision for the church … and be sold out to it.”, you feel the passion Ryan feels. This passion resonates through every chapter, every interview and every aside. This is what makes the book a must-have resource: the passion and desire Ryan has for making us all better leaders.
As I read , I felt that this book was not written by an “expert” who wishes to rain down his expertise on us, but by a humble servant who wants us all to work together, share together, lift up together, and get us all to say “yes” to that million dollar question.
We received a free copy for our review. You can purchase this book is available from Amazon.com