Children

Getting to Know Las Vegas

During May, GAs, RAs and CAs will learn about what God is doing in Las Vegas, Nevada, through Cynthia and Tom Martin, who work with refugees in their city.

Las Vegas is an interesting city! Here are some facts about the city:

Summer Sun, Family Fun: How to Be a Family on Mission This Summer

Summer is imminent — and so are opportunities for your family to serve others and share the love of Jesus together! Whether you can’t wait for the sun, heat and beach-weather clothing or you’re just biding your time until it cools off again (me), summer is too important to waste. With most schools on break until the fall, your kids are probably ripe with excitement to be out of the classroom for an extended amount of time. Rather than let your family fall prey to the apathy of sitting around your house, brainstorm together to decide on a missions project (or projects) that fits your family’s interests and strengths while sharing the love of Jesus with those who desperately need to know Him.

A little inspiration goes a long way. If your family brainstorming session needs a little kick-start, here are some fresh ideas to help your thoughts flow:

Camping: It's Intense! (Get it? In-Tents?)

School is almost out for the summer, and you know what that means: it’s vacation time, y’all! All year long we eagerly await the summer, and when it finally arrives all seems right with the world. Maybe you’re already making plans, or (if you’re like me) maybe you’re ready for the summer breeze to blow you where it will! No matter what your summertime planning inclinations may be, make sure you make a little room for children’s missions camp.

Camp is such an important time in a child’s life. I can still remember many of the lessons I learned years ago at camp. One of my memories involves a fire-building competition mishap resulting in the loss of my singed eyebrows.

The other memory I hold close even to this day is one of a missionary who was involved in a terrible car accident on the field. He had learned how to walk and talk again after many months of grueling physical therapy. But when he did stand and speak at camp, he spoke about the cost of living as an ambassador for Christ. Costly, yes, but completely worth every minute of struggle.

Unshakable – Children's Missions

As children are introduced to missional concepts, they learn they have an active part to play in God’s plan for their lives and for the world. They come to understand God can use them now—even in their youth—to share His love with others and make a difference. Experiences gained through childhood missions education lead to a lifelong commitment of service to God, His mission, and His church.

Girls in Action for girls, Royal Ambassadors for boys, and Children in Action for coed groups, are ongoing missions discipleship organizations for children in grades 1–6.

Through these organizations, children . . .

This Month — May

May 2018 Ideas


May: Alicia Martin — My Story

My name is Alicia. I was born in Bolivia. Cynthia and Tom Martin, and their sons Kyle and Joel, were missionaries in Bolivia at the time I was born. God brought me into their lives. I was an abandoned baby who was very near death because no one had taken care of me or fed me. Cynthia and Tom nursed me back to health, adopted me, and named me Alicia. Cynthia and Tom Martin became my parents!

Kyle and Joel are now adults. They are both married and have children of their own. I am now 23 years old. I live with my parents in Las Vegas. We like to go camping in the deserts near Las Vegas. We like to watch movies and play board games together.

I go with my parents to refugee events. I help my mom with special events like Bible clubs for refugee children. I also help with English classes for adults.

Are You Doing Ministry or Missions?

Is there really a difference? Yes. Over the years, I have heard many leaders tell me they were actively involved in missions. But when I dug a little deeper, it seemed they were actually doing ministry.

Okay, stay with me because this is when it gets a little Charlie and the Chocolate Factory crazy: you can be a missions group without doing missions, and you can be a ministry group and do more missions than a missions group, or vice versa.

Did you get that? It’s true. Ministry and missions can be 2 different things, and the way to tell the difference is to look at whom you are focusing on. Ministry typically happens within the church walls and to a body of believers, whereas missions happen outside the walls of the church and to those who have not responded to the gospel. See the difference?

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Making Educational Choices

During our first overseas missions assignment, our children attended an international school that catered to children of the international diplomatic and business communities as well as the wealthier citizens of the local community. The school was bilingual. Our kids learned all subjects in English and in the local national language. Due to the heavy demands of the school and the travel required to and from school, our kids woke up early and came home late. By the time our children completed their nightly homework, ate dinner and took a bath, it was bedtime. That doesn't take into account the extracurricular activities they were involved with. Our family life quickly revolved around school. Our family began to pray about alternatives, including homeschooling.

When we returned to the United States for our first furlough (now called stateside assignment), the teachers in our school district went on strike. We had to make a choice about how to finish the children’s school year. We chose to homeschool.

An Inside Peek into MK Schooling

I zipped up my backpack and stepped outside into the dark night. To arrive at school on time, my dad woke me at 5:30 each morning. Faith Academy was over an hour away, but I was used to the commute. Outside, the street was quiet. My next-door neighbor was a senator, and I imagined he and his family were still snug in their beds. Sometimes I climbed onto our roof after school and peeked into their stately property. They had the nicest private pool I had ever seen in the Philippines!

Making Difficult Decisions About Schooling

We arrived in Bangkok, Thailand, in July 1990, with an 8-month-old baby boy. In all the thoughts of transitioning to a new country, it never occurred to us that there wouldn’t be a school for our children to attend. In one of our first missionary team meetings after we arrived, we found ourselves listening to a lively discussion about the cost of international schools and about the decision that, moving forward, all missionaries would homeschool their children until high school.

This news came as a bit of a shock to me. When the time came for us to choose a curriculum, the process was pretty simple. We looked around at all the missionary kids and went to the mother of the family whose children seemed to be doing well with their education. We asked her what curriculum she used to teach her children. That’s what I ordered.

Some of the things our children said they enjoyed about studying at home were:

“We would learn about another country, and then we would go there.”

“It was so easy to get from one country to another.”

I've Never Planned a Recognition Service! Now What?

I know who you are. I talk to someone just like you several times during spring recognition season. You’ve never planned or prepared a recognition service, and you have no idea where to start. You’re a tad bit overwhelmed with the idea of a formal service, and you’d just like a simple plan.

The good news is that you’re not alone. The even better news is that you can make a recognition service as simple (or as complicated) as you’d like to make it. As long as girls are being recognized for what they’ve learned and experienced this year in missions discipleship, you are on the right path!

Together, let’s plan a simple recognition service that will allow your GAs to be recognized for all their hard work this year.

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