Royal Ambassadors Blog

Tips for Getting to Know Your New Missions Group

Your first gathering with new GAs, RAs, or CAs is a great opportunity to set a joyful tone for the year. Show children your care for their lives and your enthusiasm for the people of the world with games, great conversation, and prayer.

Getting to Know St. Louis

This month, we hope you'll lead your group in learning about the Lovelace family and the gospel work that is happening in St. Louis, Missouri.

Throughout the month, you'll learn about:

  • the Gateway Arch
  • the answered prayers of the Lovelace family
  • how the Lovelace family makes disciples in their hometown
  • the value of teamwork
  • the importance of participating in Christmas in August

Here are some St. Louis fun facts you can share with your group as you dive deeper into understanding the people, city, and spiritual needs of St. Louis:

Welcome to the “Big Top”

Come one, come all. Step right up to the main event—a new year in missions!

As you warm up for this year's Unshakable act, your pre-show checklist might look a little like mine:

  • decorate the meeting space
  • purchase materials
  • organize supplies
  • study the lesson
  • schedule monthly missions projects

All of these things are very important and will help ensure a smooth start. But, before the show can begin, it's important to consider ways you can prepare your heart to welcome a diverse group of kids to an exciting year of missions learning and action.

It's easy to appear ready on the outside; but if you haven't prepared yourself on the inside to communicate love with the children you lead, you may miss out on valuable opportunities to share the real reason why you do what you do each week. Will your actions and attitudes enable each child to know Jesus and be burdened for those who don't?

Welcome kids to the "Big Top" with these performance tips as you lead each week:

To Be or Not to Be

From Greece to the present day, actors and actresses have worn masks during performances to transition from one character to another. During Elizabethan days, one actor could portray various parts of a play simply by wearing a different mask on the stage.

While we don’t wear physical masks as we go through daily life, some of us nevertheless mask the feelings, thoughts, and even pain we are carrying around on the inside.

Recently, I was talking with a friend about a member of her family. Her family member is struggling with the consequences of a decision made years ago. From all outward appearances, the family member seems well adjusted and seems to have their life together. However, behind the appearance—behind the mask they are wearing—is a huge amount of pain and suffering few know about.

While my job as an editor and writer often requires me to share personal experiences, I tend to be more private about my personal life. No, I don’t hold a mask in front of my face. But, I am an expert at disguising what’s really happening inside.

Bridging the Gap: Transitioning from GA, RA, and CA to Student Ministry

Change can be hard. It can be especially hard on a child. When the time comes for your GAs, RAs, or CAs to move up and move out, how can you help them with this transition? Here are three simple steps that might help.

Communication Is Key
Open lines of communication between children, parents, and student ministers are essential to a successful transition. Have conversations with your GAs, RAs, or CAs about what they will experience in their new environments. Keep parents informed about any potential events or recognition services that will help bridge the gap between children and student programs. Talk to the student leader(s) in your church. Plan a joint event that will provide the upcoming students with a positive and uplifting experience.

Which Children’s Program Is Right for Me?

When making decisions for your children's ministry programming, it's always a good idea to be aware of the issues involved. Deciding which program is right for you can be hard, and there are many paths one might take. We often receive calls from children's ministers and parents alike who find themselves stuck between two paths. Often, the choice is between our traditional children's organizations like Girls in Action and Royal Ambassadors and the coed group AWANA. The following provides an in-depth look at the differences between these two programs. You can also look over this comparative breakdown between other popular program materials.

Germany: You Should Know These Facts

This month, you'll lead your group in learning about the Dietz family and the gospel work happening in Germany. Exploring many facets of German history and culture will help your group understand the situations and challenges the Dietz family faces every day. Throughout your curriculum, you will learn about:

  • the Berlin Wall,
  • the Leipzig train station (the largest train station in the world),
  • autobahns, or highways, which do not have speed limits,
  • the tech-savvy culture of Germany,
  • and the world's largest science and technology museum.

To dive deeper into understanding the culture and people of Germany, here are some additional fun facts you can share with your group:

Unshakable

In 1989, I sat in my living room watching the World Series between the Oakland Athletics and San Francisco Giants. As I listened to the announcer covering the game, the TV screen suddenly went black. In a few seconds, the announcer's voice came back on, with a shaky camera showing the stadium. A magnitude 6.9 earthquake had just hit the Bay Area, leaving 67 people dead.

In the few minutes the earthquake shook, lives changed, homes were destroyed, and a baseball game became the least important topic for the day. In those few moments, Americans and the world were reminded that few things in life are truly unshakable.

When we think about politicians or terrorism or crime, we are reminded that life is constantly being shaken. When we think about the death of a loved one, the betrayal of a friend or spouse, the loss of a job, or a sickness, we are reminded that life is constantly being shaken.

Who among us isn't looking for the unshakable? Who among us isn't looking for a solid foundation to build upon?

During the 2018–19 year, GAs, RAs, and CAs will seek out unshakable foundations. What a timely theme this is!

A GA Leader Goes to Burkina Faso

“You are going where?” I heard that question again and again as I told my friends of my next exciting missions adventure with God — going to Burkina Faso to help begin missions education for children. Preparation for this trip recalled one of my earliest mission studies as a new GA leader — missions in Upper Volta. I remembered my group of GAs making paper replica maps of the butterfly-shaped country and learning to spell and pronounce the name of the capital.

“Can you say Ouagadougou?” French is the official language of Burkina Faso, although this country’s heritage is primarily Mossi with the Mooré language widely spoken. With a low literacy rate for those over age 15, the challenges before me were for much more than the pronunciation of Ouagadougou [oh-WAH-gah-DOO-goo]. How would I help women understand the need for missions education and discipleship and equip them to begin?

Reflections on Time Well Spent

This month, several of our staff members traveled to the WMU Annual Meeting and Southern Baptist Convention held in Dallas, Texas. For months before the event, we’ve planned, created, imagined, written, put items together, and taken them apart to be packed. We built a hut and pushcart, learned to play mancala, wrote speeches, coordinated missionary speakers, and designed conferences. We’ve made reservations, determined schedules, planned meals, tweaked those schedules, and planned events. We’ve counted supplies and tried to run through every possible scenario imaginable to make sure we are more than prepared.

With all of that preparation, you’d think I was ready for anything. I do have to confess I was not prepared for how a handful of little girls made me feel Monday at the WMU booth on the exhibit floor of the Southern Baptist Convention.

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