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Gathering Breakout #1 || Michelle Anthony

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7 Pillars of Family Ministry Philosophy
*Family Ministry for Spiritual Formation in this Generation

Philosophy is focusing on the answers to the why questions. What are the reasons we’ve got into Family Ministry in the first place.
Philos – LOVE  ||  Sophia – WISDOM

Philosophy is the love of wisdom. Let’s be in love with the why of what we do, not the what of what we do.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever! (Psalm 111:10 ESV)

1. Family is Primary // God s Design for faith replication is through the context of the family (Deut. 6; Ps. 78) while the church  plays a supportive/equipping role to this endeavor (Eph. 4:12).
2. Spiritual Formation // Formational approach… not just information. Lifelong transformation is the goal. Spiritual formation is about helping kids build a life-long relationship with God.

This means giving them a strong foundation in biblical knowledge and being intentional about creating space for kids to encounter the living God. Through the process of spiritual formation, we desire children to open their hearts to God, learn to discern His voice, have a desire to obey Him, and to do so in the power the Holy Spirit offers to each believer.

3. Holy Spirit is the Teacher // We recognize that the Holy Spirit is the primary teacher of our children. Parents and leaders have the opportunity to create “environments” where the Holy Spirit is free to move, teach, and lead. They have the privilege of coming alongside what the Holy Spirit is doing in the life of a child

Create worship response stations and give kids open-ended questions that spur their own heart.

4. Authority of Scripture // The Bible is God s truth for daily living. God s Word holds instruction for children to interpret their lives through the lens of God s character and will. Are resources should be true to content and context and allow kids to investigate Scripture for themselves so they will feel confident to share His Word with others.

We want a generation that understands their Bible, and how it relates to their own lives. Helping kids learn through multiple forms of learning; auditory, tactile, etc…

5. The Big God Story // Unpacking God’s Word as one chronological storyline where relationship and redemption are at the center. Tying OT to the NT. We define the “The Big God Story” as God’s ENTIRE story. It incorporates all of history, stretching from Genesis to Revelation and beyond. In the past, Christian instruction has often told fragmented stories of God, Jesus, or other people in the Bible, as if they were not part of a greater narrative.

We define the “The Big God Story” as God’s ENTIRE story. It incorporates all of history, stretching from Genesis to Revelation and beyond. In the past, Christian instruction has often told fragmented stories of God, Jesus, or other people in the Bible, as if they were not part of a greater narrative

6. God-Centered // Because it is one story about God s love and redemption, we make God the main focus of every lesson and resource! Each lesson is titled by something we know about God from a specific Bible passage. The emphasis is on God, not the supporting cast in the story (ex. God Is Victorious vs. David and Goliath).

Understanding what we know about God by the way He has worked in the lives of people and circumstances in the Bible is formational in our lives today.

7. Ministry Support // Partner with the local church to Inspire, Equip, and Support with resources for home and church. Stay in Conversations about what we do that brings us into community across the world.

Jonathan Cliff is married to his wife Starr and they together live out their days with two sons and a daughter. Jonathan serves as one of the Pastors at Grace Community Church in Clarksville, Tennessee; where he works with leaders throughout the city to help develop Christian community that leads to deep and meaningful spiritual friendships. His journey has been an adventurous one, having served in the local church for 15 years in family ministry developing leaders, building environments for kids and students to belong, and encouraging parents to take big spiritual steps with their families.