From VBS to Mission Journeys to baptisms, our young people have engaged with the gospel. Read a few stories below to discover how our children have spiritually grown this summer.
With Faith Placed in Jesus
“The Station Hill campus experienced another great summer engaging many families and individuals locally, nationally, and globally. Students served locally through Mission 931 in Spring Hill and Columbia, and nationally with the Chicago Mission Journey. Our 5th Grade Mission Journey took VBS to Jackson, TN. Through VBS at Station Hill, we had more professions of faith than ever before (29 the week of VBS and have had 5 more professions of faith since then!) God is not done yet. With a team of 7 members, God is sending VBS to Cape Town South Africa this fall, where 700 children will hear the gospel of Jesus Christ, some for the very first time.
Eyes Opened to New Opportunities
Because of her experience at Mission 931, Lilly, a middle schooler, glorifies Jesus with her musical talent and plays an instrument at a local senior care facility during a weekly Bible study for residents. Shelby, a high schooler, said her eyes were opened to the needs and opportunities around her. In Jackson, TN, 5th graders like Hannah, Garrett, and Harper realized that poverty and hunger are not just problems for other countries. Likewise, high schoolers serving in Chicago joined together to process and pray for the brokenness they experienced from leading backyard kids’ clubs in the inner-city. Continue to pray as our youth are enlightened and continue to engage others with the good news of Jesus Christ.” —Chris Blanton, Next Gen and Student Minister, and Taylor Johnson, Children’s Minister for The Church at Station Hill
Discipleship Starts Young
“The Preschool and Children’s Ministry at the Avenue South campus is blossoming. This summer, one of the most exciting ways God shared these fruits with us was in a sweet fifth grader who participated on an international Mission Journey in Guatemala. I was able to watch her interact with and teach other children in Guatemala about God’s love for them. Her heart broke for what breaks God’s heart, and she came to a deeper understanding of her own faith and how to share it with others. It was a sweet reminder that our ministries are planting seeds, though we may not always get to see the fruits, and that God is using those seeds to change hearts and lives. This fall, we have more children than ever registered. All that means is that we get the opportunity to disciple more children and speak into families’ lives, working together with them to establish firm foundations of faith.” —Alex Rose, Preschool and Children’s Minister for The Church at Avenue South
Service Stemmed from Love
“The children at the Harpeth Heights campus have been living on mission this summer. Loving their neighbors, sharing stories of how God is working, and boldly taking next steps in their faith journeys are just a few ways they have engaged with the gospel. They have been growing and learning more about being truth speakers, kingdom builders, and culture shapers. During VBS, one of our mission projects was to collect and take shoebox size containers, full of new toys and an encouraging note, to The Children’s Hospital at TriStar Centennial for children who are ill or experiencing trauma. We were able to pack and deliver 150 boxes, all with messages of God’s hope in them. After being part of making and packing the boxes for the children’s hospital, a five-year-old wanted to do more. She and her mother went door to door in their neighborhood and collected items, made baskets for senior adults living in an assisted living home, and spent an afternoon delivering them to each resident. A second grader made a profession of faith. A few weeks later, she shared her testimony with a fifth grader, who then made her own profession of faith after hearing the story.
To Love and To Share
Some of our children served at a local community garden that gives produce to those who are living with food insecurity. They spent some of their mornings weeding and planting, knowing it would help others. Some of our children also went to Elijah’s Heart ministry in the inner city of Nashville and helped serve lunch to children living in poverty. They packed lunch bags and played with the children in the community. As they head to school, we are hopeful that when they’re asked what they did this summer that they will have opportunities to share about how they have loved their neighbors well and learned to share the gospel.” —Susan Foster, Discipleship and Missions Minister for The Church at Harpeth Heights
Total Life Transformation
“At the Brentwood campus, the summer was a huge success. Over 400 students and adults stepped up to lead and be a part of sharing the gospel with our community during VBS. We had 34 confirmed salvations and many more that went home to talk with their families about what God had done in their hearts and minds. Even today, we’re hearing stories, that we did not know about, of children that made decision to follow Christ. God is good!
While on the Chicago Mission Journey, students from almost every campus partnered with the metro schools in the area and were able to bless the teachers by painting their classrooms. Our students had the privilege of making a classroom feel like home. It was a special treat for the teachers, because they not only teach the children, but they also help feed them and wash their clothes at the school. After painting, we traveled around on the train, where one student started up a gospel conversation and gave away his Bible by the end of it.
Some of our students that were serving in a nearby park had the opportunity to pray with a family who had tragically lost their son. Our students were so moved and impacted by this trip that one girl gave her life to the Lord. She was baptized, along with 11 other children and students, at our Baptism in the Hall event. It’s evident that God truly has engaged the next generation of disciples.” —Brad Smith, Children’s Minister, Karyn Caldwell, Administrative Assistant for Student and Next Gen & Family Ministries, and Sarah Fehl, Student Ministry Assistant for Brentwood Baptist Church