Children in Church: Nurturing Hearts of Worship by Curt & Sandra Lovelace, an upcoming release by Great Waters Press!
Challenging, encouraging and practical information to help us all welcome children into the corporate worship of the church. This book is for parents with children age 8 and younger.
Cost: Advance-reader hardcopies are available now for $12.00 with free shipping inside the continental U.S.
Here's a peek at the Table of Contents -
1. Bringing Them In
2. Understanding the Elements
3. Counting the Cost
4. Laying the Foundation
5. Getting Ready
6. Packing the Bag
7. Drawing the Word
8. Preparing the Plan
9. Facing the Challenges
10. Growing as Disciples
Plus - A Note to Church Leaders
I was happy to take a peek at this book. I have done some scripture and soul searching on the topic of including our entire family in corporate worship at "big church" (that's what I call the main service) in the past. I found the author's tone was very encouraging throughout this book.
Their basic point is that corporate worship is designed to be shared with your children, not withheld from them while being seperated from the family into "children's church" (once again, my term for it). They back up their position with plenty of Scripture. But, they don't just stop with the "whys", they helped with the "hows"!
I loved their idea of the Church Bag - filled with activities to keep your younger children quietly engaged. Most of all - the transitioning from just entertaining your young children quietly to moving them into active listening and worshipping with illustrations, note taking, and more.
My personal opinion on this issue is not quite as convicted as the authors. We have 8 children, and over the years - we have included them with us in "big church" and we have taken part in "chidren's chruch". It has really depended upon the church we were attending, and the children concerned (our children have a huge variety of personalities!) Currently, our church has the most phenomenal children's ministry, in fact - maybe I'll stop going to "big church" and go to "children's church" instead (there is alot of spiritual growth happening in my children due to the leadership they have!) You will need to research and investigate what your church offers.
My advice - this is a helpful, practical book to encourage you to bring your children along for corporate, family worship. It is also filled with ideas and suggestions for basic child training (learning to sit quietly, respectful behavior, etc.) that you will find helpful even if you don't decide to keep your children with you in "big church".
See what the other members of the TOS Review Crew thought here.
I was sent a complimentary copy in exchange for my honest opinion as part of the TOS Review Crew.