What Children Need

March 1st, 2012

According to the inter­na­tionally recognized children’s advocacy and education organi­zation, The Search Institute’s “What Children Need: The Building Blocks for Children and Youth,” children need supportive adult relationships in their lives other than their parents.  As an educator and a mom, I believe this both on a personal and profes­sional level.  It is important for children to spend time with other supportive adults, especially at church.

When our pastors met my son for the first time, they looked right at him and said “hello.”  They didn’t look over his head and talk to me. They didn’t just ruffle his hair and walk by. They acknowledged him as an individual person.  Ethan was two years old at the time.

There are several reasons why this is important to me, but to put it in a nutshell, children are people too and they are on their own spiritual path.  Having the pastors at Grace recognize that the youth are members too is a large part of why we are members at Grace.  I especially appreciate the times when my son has an oppor­tunity to interact directly with the pastors.  Here at Grace the children at the 11:00 AM Sunday service sit with the pastors and listen to a children’s sermon.  At VBS (Vacation Bible School) the pastors lead activity stations, facilitate the opening and closing sessions, and participate in songs and fellowship.  The youth at Grace get quality time with the pastors and in turn, the youth have adults that they can trust and rely on.

It’s known that within any organi­zation, the leaders set the tone.  Because Grace’s pastors believe in the importance of supporting youth, other members do too.  There are many other adults at Grace who know my son well, and have helped him learn about God’s love.  I see that as a very important role in a child’s life, and am thankful for those who took the time to share their faith with him.

My true spiritual path did not begin until I was an adult and there was a huge hole in my life until I found Grace. I am so happy that my son is a part of this wonderful community of Christians who care about the youth of Grace.

Jodi Becker