By David Dawson
This year, a big event is coming to them.
On the first Friday of November, the church is hosting “Jammin’ in a Box” — an event designed by WMU that focuses on missions and the impact that missionaries make across the world.
“This is the first time for us to host an in-house JAM event,” said Eric Boswell, children’s minister at Tulip Grove. “We are thankful that Tennessee WMU put together all the teaching materials needed in an ‘event in a box’ format. It has made putting together this event super easy.”
Churches participating in this year’s JAM project receive a package that contains all of the components needed for hosting the event, including plans, ideas, tips, and instructions, along with the materials and “kits” that can be used for activities related to the event.
Tulip Grove’s JAM session is scheduled to be a three-hour event, and will include a time of worship, Bible Study, missionary spotlight, prayer for missions, crafts, games and a mission project.
Boswell noted that all of the night’s activities will be “centered around how important it is for followers of Christ to share the gospel with those around them.”
He said the participants will focus on Scripture and will also examine examples of current missionaries and missionary kids.
“Since the theme is ‘Jammin’ In A Box’ — and is incorporating a retro boombox in the logo — we have asked the kids to dress in their favorite 80’s clothing just for fun,” Boswell said.
The “Jammin’ in a Box” package is designed in a way that it can be used for a one-night event or spread out over several weeks.
The package includes: a Bible study guide that focuses on Isaiah 6:8, a ‘Meet a Missionary Family’ story and link to a video, crafts and activities, missions projects that allow participants to take the event into their neighborhood, and handouts, posters and other materials.
Churches interested in hosting a “Jammin’ in a Box” event can contact WMU missions discipleship specialist Kim Cruse at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Boswell said he believes the event will be both impactful and fun for the children.
“It’s always great when kids begin to see the big picture of why we do missions,” he said. “It starts with them understanding the gospel of Jesus Christ and sharing it with others out of their love and obedience to Christ. An event such as this allows kids to be actively involved in missions through praying for missions, giving to missions, and going/participating in missions.”
Boswell noted that Mission Education programs — such as Mission Friends, RAs, GAs, and events like JAM — are a good way to introduce children to mission work.
“(These programs and events) get kids to start asking Gospel-focused questions, such as ‘Who is God wanting me to share Jesus with?’ or ‘Is God calling me to be a missionary one day?’ said Boswell. “And to me, that is really exciting.”
Boswell added that there is no age restrictions when it comes to learning about missions. “I think it is so important for children to understand that they don’t have to wait until they are an adult to be involved in mission work,” he said. “Doing ‘hands-on’ mission activities allow kids to partner in carrying out the gospel.”
“When kids are allowed to participate in mission projects, it sparks their own thoughts on how they can minister to those they encounter in their homes, neighborhoods, schools, sports teams, etc.”
Boswell said mission work is perhaps more important now than ever before, given the current circumstances.
“In the aftermath of the pandemic, it is a critical time for us to equip our kids with the tools they need to meet the needs of others and share the gospel of Jesus Christ,” he said. B&R