Monday, August 24, 2015
Life after Awana
I was thinking the other day about how our current activities will affect the kids in a few years. I was never big on ballet or gymnastics because at 30, how did 10 years of ballet help you? I can see where some of these activities will help with flexibility, over all health (avoiding childhood obesity, etc), and social skills. However, my daughters will (hopefully) never be professional cheerleaders, so why spend thousands on cheer camps, make up, and travel for a few years of rah rah rah?
The majority of our activities are counted as school electives some how. We go to Toastmasters - that is a speech credit. Boy scouts - that is a PE credit (and the eagle rank comes with it's own set of life long perks). Banjo is a music credit. While the children will probably never join a band and play professionally, it has helped them learn to read music, play with others, and has helped them with other instruments that they also play (piano, flute, guitar....). Then we have Awana. While it is counted as a Bible credit, this is one activity that has always been a priority in our day. I am a firm believer that a passionate relationship with God will get you further in life than anything else.
How? If you have a true relationship with the Creator of the universe, you will be morally upright, pleasing to be around, faithful, honest, trustworthy, and an all around 'good person.' In many ways these things will get you noticed before your resume is even looked at.
So how does Awana play into all of this? Well, if you are not familiar with Awana, it is a program for girls and boys from Kinder (sometimes 2 yo) all the way up to 12th grade. Students memorize passages of the Bible, learn how to read and study the Bible, and learn to serve others in the name of Christ. After 6th grade, the fun doesn't stop! Students continue on, not just memorizing passages, but reading entire books of the Bible and giving an oral summary of what they read. It is absolutely amazing to hear some of the details that these students remember and pull out of a book that I haven't read lately (when was the last time you read Nehemiah or Job?)
So how will this 2 day a week (for our family we serve one day and learn the other) commitment help my children in the future?
I don't know for sure. I wish I did. I can't see the future.
However, I have told the kids (especially Codie who want to get a job) that God, church, and our relationship with Him is always to remain at the top of our priority list. That means that when he does start to work, no working on Sundays (esp the morning) or Wed night. Don't work all the services. You cannot continue to serve, when you are not learning.
I also pray that by spending all of these years in Awana, my children will learn a lot about what God has planned for them. I pray that with the knowledge they receive, they will continue to breath life into the younger generation. Even before they have their own families, I would love to see them serve other children. Teach the gospel. Christ commands us to GO. Go where? Everywhere. Not all of us are called to go to India, Ethiopia, and Africa. However, nearly all of us are called (if we listen) to help in someway at our own churches. It doesn't have to be with kids - although the students and children's ministries can always use an extra set of hands.....
So how will life after Awana look for my children? I guess we will have to wait and see. It's only a few years away - Codie is a senior this year, and Cynthia is a freshman.