Families on Mission

Raising Thankful Children

Growing up, most of us were taught to be thankful for what we had. For many of us, saying “thank you” was just as important as saying “excuse me” or “yes, ma’am.” If you grew up in the South, that was especially true for you! But beyond saying the words themselves, how do we teach our children to be truly thankful people? It starts by modeling real thankfulness.

Giving thanks before a meal is a great place to begin. After your prayer, explain everything that had to come together to make that meal happen. Talk about the plants and animals grown and harvested, the packing and shipping processes that delivered these goods to the store, the store clerks and workers who received it and put it out on display, the resources you needed to purchase the food, and all the time and effort to make the meal and set it out for them to enjoy. Maybe you could say something like, “When we thank God for our food, we remember all that had to happen to bring it to our table.”

Families on Mission

Apple Orchard

Sharing God's love together is sure to ignite a lifelong passion for missions in your family! Use these resources at home to reinforce what preschoolers are learning at church. Talking about and praying for missionaries will spark creative ideas for helping others in your own community.  

WMU has developed resources that can help your family reach out to others.


Play and Learn November 2017

Enjoy Spicy Apple Cider Together

Supplies: picture of apple orchard, Johnny Appleseed book/information, ½ gallon apple cider or apple juice, 5 whole cloves, 1½ cinnamon sticks, 2 teaspoons of sugar, half fresh lemon, cups, spoons, pot, apple, knife

Before doing this activity with your child, go the library and check out a book on Johnny Appleseed. If a library is not close, you could go on the Internet and obtain some information about him. Encourage your child to sit with you while you read a book or information about Johnny Appleseed. Say: Apple trees were planted by Johnny Appleseed all across Ohio. He was actually a nurseryman named John Chapman.

Six Ways to Engage Families in Missions

Helping Others

When families learn about missions, pray for missions, give to missions, and work together to help others, preschoolers will develop an “all in” heart for missions. While preschoolers certainly learn a great deal about missionaries in Mission Friends®, we must also enlist our preschoolers’ families to engage in missions at home.

Our ministries consultant, Lena Plunk, recently shared a story about how her nieces are on mission in their neighborhood. While Lena was visiting, her nieces were watching a video when they heard the garbage truck coming up their road. Her niece MJ jumped up and said, “The garbage truck, hurry, we don’t want to miss them!” Lena thought the girls were going to the window to watch the truck. Instead, they grabbed thirst-quencher drinks and ran out to give these gifts to the men on the truck. Lena says that her nieces enjoy sharing water, cookies, and snacks with all of their community helpers. Out of their love for Jesus, her 2 nieces enjoy giving to others.

How can you help your preschoolers’ families become Families on Mission?

Reverse Trick or Treat

Many churches throw open their doors at Halloween with fall festivals to attract new people and create a positive impact on their community. Reverse trick or treating takes church members outside the church walls and into your neighborhood.

Almost every household is prepared to receive trick-or-treaters on Halloween night. Homeowners sit out with their buckets of candy or leave their front porch lights on as welcome symbols. So, what are we waiting for? This is an open-door opportunity to meet the people who live around your church!

Trick or Treat for Missions

Turn Your Home into the Place for Halloween Outreach

During the Halloween season many churches develop events in an effort to reach their surrounding community. Some community members will attend, but many people fear coming anywhere near a church building. Have you ever considered how your family can use Halloween to bring the gospel into your community?

Here’s how:

Saving to Give

Teaching Your Children about Giving

All missions and ministry have something in common—the use of time and money. And, all of us would like an increase of both resources in our lives! Use the following tips to teach your children how to better use the resources you already have.

Find Your Time Wasters

  • Talk to your children about time management. Talk about the importance of spending our time on things that have eternal impact.
  • Pray with your children and ask God to show you what is wasting your time. This could be as simple as too much time on your computer or smartphone or excess time spent on hobbies. The truth is, most of us already know our time wasters!
  • Create a calendar with your children. Build missions activities into your schedule.
  • Be bold enough to say no to requests that will eat into time spent together with your family and time spent serving the Lord.

Wasted food equals wasted money

Be a Fan

Making Disciples at the Football Stadium

Fall is a great time for families on mission. With fall comes colorful leaves, back to school shopping, and, yes, football. From peewee to pro, opportunities abound to watch football played by all ages. Many women love football and enjoy cheering for their favorite teams. Others, however, just tolerate the game for the sake of people in their lives who enjoy it. Regardless of opinions about the sport, football games may give an opportunity to minister and reach out to others during this fall season. Fans are definitely a cross section of society, and games give families an opportunity to get to know and witness to people outside their circle of friends.

Here are some ideas for your Christian football playbook.

"Mom, Where Is Peru?"

I love conversations with my eight-year-old son, Landon, but I especially enjoy conversations about our faith and sharing our faith with others. He recently claimed Christ as his Savior, so these conversations are increasing.

“Why do some people choose not to accept Jesus?” has been his hardest question for me to answer so far. If we are honest, it’s a tough one for any Christian to comprehend, much less an eight-year-old. One of my favorite questions has to be when he asked why missionaries would leave their families to go around the world to tell others about Jesus.

To help both of our sons understand what we can do to share our faith with others, we are active in missions discipleship as a family. Tommy leads RA, I lead GA, and both boys are active in missions. We’ve been on family missions trips and participated in local Children’s Missions Day projects. We see great value in making sure our children understand the Great Commission and that we are all responsible for living out our faith in front of others.

Being a Missional Family

“Families on Mission” is more than a concept or even a catchphrase.

At least, it should be.

After all, who better to do missions with than the people you love the most—your own family! What a great future we are providing our children as we not only teach them about missions, but we serve together doing missions.

While summer is in full swing, there is no better time than now to get your family involved in a missions project. Your project doesn't have to be anything elaborate, cost a small fortune, or even require faraway travel. You can do missions as a family in your own community!

Here are a few ways your family can get involved in the mission of God.

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