In children’s ministry, our most important goal is to help families grow in faith. As an example, let’s look at the mighty oak tree proverbs.
In the forest, a small acorn falls to the ground. Four to six weeks later, the acorn sprouts into a small oak sapling. Throughout the next 20 to 30 years, it will grow into a mighty oak tree. Some live to be 500 or even 600 years old.
I recently came across this verse:
“They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor.” Isaiah 61:3
It reminded me that God calls children’s ministry workers for an important purpose. We are to help children and families grow in their faith so that spiritually they’re like a mighty oak tree.
The Mighty Oak Tree Proverbs: How Can This Happen?
We can help children and families develop strong spiritual roots.
At the beginning of its life, the oak spends most of its energy on root development. An initial root is called the taproot. It grows deep underground, looking for a dependable supply of moisture.
We can help kids develop a deep connection with Christ.
If you want to grow children and families who are spiritually strong, like the mighty oak tree proverbs suggest, that’s the first step. We must help people develop a deep connection with Christ. This is the most important factor.
A deep faith, the kind that can withstand the winds of doubt, spiritual droughts and storms of life, is a faith that has, first and foremost, a deep connection with Christ. This deep faith comes from remaining rooted and grounded in Jesus.
Our faith and relationship with Jesus grow deeper and stronger by spending time with Him. As we spend time with Him, our faith roots grow deeper.
Another thing we must do to help kids and families develop a strong “oak tree” kind of faith is help them connect with other believers. As the oak tree’s main root grows deeper, it also begins growing horizontal roots.
These horizontal roots bring moisture and nutrients for the tree’s lifetime. And when other oak trees are nearby, the trees grow their root systems together. That way, they can share nutrients, moisture and minerals. Together they grow side by side.
The mighty oak tree proverbs reveals how faith develops through relationships. Growth comes from and is sustained by being connected to other believers who send spiritual nutrients, prayers and encouragement your way. Consider the kids and families in your ministry. Are you giving them opportunities to connect with other Christians and grow in their faith through those relationships? A deep faith comes through deep connections with other believers.
As our culture continues its post-Christian slide, only mighty oak trees will be able to withstand the faith assaults that come our way. Like never before, we must commit to helping kids and families grow oak tree faith.
Here Are the Challenges Before Us
- We must send our kids off to college with mighty oak tree faith.
- We must equip volunteers with the tools and training they need to help kids and families grow oak tree faith.
- And we must bring oak tree sapling faith into community with other oak trees who nourish them with the spiritual nutrients they need to grow strong.
Plus, we must remember: It takes time to grow a mighty oak tree. And it takes time to grow mighty oak tree faith. All you may see right now in many kids and families you serve is a small, sapling kind of faith. But if you continue to care for that sapling faith, it will one day be a mighty oak faith.