During the month of April, we've been teaching Sojourn's kids about giving and stewardship. We've used the story of the seven year-old king, Joash (2 Kings 11-13; 2 Chronicles 22-24), to highlight stewardship principles for the kids. See the lesson here. God used Joash and the wise priest Jehoiada to turn Israel's hearts back to him and away from worshiping idols. When Joash became king, God's temple had fallen into disrepair. So, Jeohiada made a collection box by boring a hole in the top of a chest and put it beside the altar in the temple. Israel brought gifts for the temple along with their regular sacrifices. Even though he was just seven, God used Joash to make things new again in Israel!
Sojourn's vision is to see the gospel transform everything--ourselves as individuals, our church, our city, and our world. SojournKids' vision is to see the gospel transform the next generation. Part of seeing kids grow up to be a new people made alive by the gospel is teaching them how to participate in regular Christian practices. We're intentional about teaching kids to pray, sing, respond, and read their Bible. We also want to be intentional about teaching them to give. During SojournKids' regular gatherings, we have a basket ("with a hole in the top just like Joash’s box"). When we gather together on Sundays, kids can bring money to put in the basket. These gifts support Sojourn's vision of gospel transformation as part of our regular budget.
There is great joy in participating in God's work by giving sacrificially. And kids will be excited about supporting this work through giving a portion of their allowance. Even if they aren't excited, this is a great way to teach them about stewardship and generosity. God has graciously given us all things. Now, we can return thanks to him by giving of our money and ourselves.
With joy in serving and giving,