Presenter: Dr. Tim Kimmel
Presentation content based on the book, Connecting Church & Home.

Connecting Church & Home

  • There’s a huge difference between people who have great ministries and people who live great lives.
  • We are kidding ourselves if we think that what we do at church is somehow going to offset what’s being undermined at home.
  • We need to see families how God sees them, and see churches how God meant for them to function.

1. God’s love is best nurtured through spiritually thriving families.

  • In the beginning, God didn’t make a church, a country club, a committee, or an organization. He made a family.
  • If we understood the family, we could understand how to make the church more effective.
  • The family is a domestic church.
  • Because everyone comes from a family, the strength of the family determines everything:
    • The health of the church.
    • The influence of the gospel.
    • The impact of world missions.
    • The conscience of political leadership.
    • The character of our military and first responders.
    • The heart of our educational system.
    • The ethics of our scientific community.
    • The morality of our arts and entertainment.
    • The integrity of our business community.
  • The biggest category among Christian parents, is “fear-based” parents. They are scared they cannot transfer God’s Word to their children on their own.
  • Fear-based parenting does not launch children who have a passionate faith.
  • God hasn’t called us to raise safe, Christian kids. He has called us to raise strong ones.
  • If we aren’t careful, the Christian life we teach our kids ends up being “sin management” and “image control,” instead of the true work of the cross.
  • Thriving families:
    • Parents are leading kids even if they do not know how
    • Parents are outwardly focused.

2. God’s love is best illustrated through churches and homes that reflect His heart.

  • When grace isn’t the defining feature of our homes, it doesn’t matter if we get everything else biblically accurate.
  • There should be a place for grace in everything we do.
  • Grace makes people nervous.
  • If we live our lives based on grace we must forgive, we must humble ourselves, we must rely God and take time for Him.
  • The Bible doesn’t say, “Thy Word have I hid in my head.” We are often too focused on kids knowing biblical information, instead of understanding the heart of God.

3. God’s love is best transferred through a well-thought through strategy that is guided by His truth and tempered by His grace.

  • John 1:14; 2 Peter 3:18; 2 Corinthians 9:8
  • The church’s philosophical starting point is often performance, while the family’s starting point is fear.
  • Our philosophical starting point should be grace.
  • Grace is treating kids the same way God treats His kids.
    • Aim them at true greatness.
    • Build their character.
    • Give their hearts freedom.
    • Meet their true inner needs.
  • True greatness: a passionate love for Jesus Christ that shows itself in an unquenchable love and concern for others.

4. God’s love is best leveraged when churches and families operate in partnership.

  • Obviously there are exceptions for children with broken homes, but we need to help families figure out how to take Jesus home and let him shine there.
  • We must make sure everything we do as a church is tempered through grace.
  • Prepare them, Free them, Empower them, Aim them.
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GJ Farmer is a husband, a dad, the founder of ChildrensMinistryBlog.com, and is the Children’s Pastor at First Baptist Church in Somerset, Kentucky. He has completed a Bachelor’s degree in Church Ministries and a Master’s degree in Children’s Ministry. He has also been fortunate to lead and teach groups at children’s ministry conferences and to have had some of his writing published. Apart from working with kids, he enjoys reading, performing magic tricks, playing video games, and University of Kentucky basketball.

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