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Archive for Missional

Just a Phase.

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If someone has ever told you, “It’s just a phase,” chances are it was intended as a consolation or a word of encouragement. More than likely, what they meant was, “Don’t worry. You can survive this. It won’t last forever.” When I first became a mother and my colicky son was crying for hours after each feeding I needed to know there was hope for a different tomorrow. I needed to know there would come a day when I didn’t smell like baby vomit and when the child I loved didn’t cry for hours.

There’s a lot of truth to the idea that your current relationship with your child is “Just a Phase.” But that’s not to suggest that, as parents, we should grit our teeth and hold out for the next phase to come. A phase isn’t something to wish away or hurry past. Because once a phase is over, it’s over.

We only have the opportunity to know our child once as a three-year-old. After 52 short weeks, they turn four. Sure, moving to the next phase means they will stop throwing catastrophic tantrums when you insist they cannot finish the half-eaten breakfast bar they just discovered under their car seat. But it also might mean fewer spontaneous giggles, loss of imagination. It might mean they finally discover “bilzoder” is actually pronounced “bulldozer.” It might mean you have to start answering some questions you weren’t quite ready for.

Whether your child is a toddler, an elementary age kid, a middle schooler, or a high schooler, they’re in a phase.

And the phase won’t last for long.

Every phase is a timeframe in a kid’s life when you can leverage distinctive opportunities to influence their future. But in order to leverage the opportunities of each phase, you have to show up for it.

That may sound obvious, but it can be incredibly challenging at the same time.

It’s easy to get stuck in the phase that came before. It’s baffling at times when you realize your child isn’t the same person you thought you knew last year. When their interests change, or their preferences change, it can be hard to keep up.

It’s easy to rush into the phase that should come later. Maybe it’s because we’re ready to watch a new movie, read a new book, or play a new game, so we stretch the age-limit just a touch. Maybe it’s because—let’s face it—if we can get our son to shoot a basketball through a ten-foot goal when he’s six, we’ve earned serious bragging rights. But childhood isn’t meant to be rushed. If we’re always in a hurry to get to the next phase, we can miss what is unique about the phase our kids are currently in.

So, whatever phase you’re child is in, remember there is something remarkable happening right now. This phase won’t last forever. Don’t rush the clock. Don’t wish away the moments you have.

At Vista we value Parent Equipping, coming alongside of families supporting and assisting parents to develop the Kingdom attitudes and practices of their children. This is an important concept to fully understand and embrace. Christian schools and the local church’s Sunday school have traditionally been looked to as the places where children learn about God, the Bible teaches us that children really need to learn from their parents. , Deuteronomy 6:7 instructs us to take God’s Word and …repeat it again and again to our children. We are to talk about it when we are at home and when we are away on a journey, when we are lying down and when we are getting up again. This is a basic model for teaching children about God in the home. The perspective taught in this passage is that the parents are primarily responsible for the spiritual development of their children.

We know that this is not easy. We know it can be overwhelming. We want to partner with you and your family in the development of worshipful, relational and missional children. You don’t have to do this alone so we have created ways to be on this journey with you:

  • Yearly: Milestone Celebrations – Child Dedications (twice a year) and Baptism
  • Monthly: talk.pray.do – a monthly resource based on Deuteronomy 6, encouraging families to teach their children about God as they go through the ordinary experiences of life. It’s about intentionality within the rhythm of your everyday life. We encourage you to TALK with your children for 15 minutes a day. PRAY at least twice a week in meaningful time together as a family. Then we simply ask that you DO one family night a month. Each month we provide instruction and tools to serve as a springboard for your family time.
  • Weekly: “What did they learn?” email follow ups to allow your family to continue the discussion at home regarding the lesson taught that Sunday. If you ever miss a week, check the Vista Parents Blog for more information.
  • Groups: Family Discipleship small groups that study a particular subject for 6 to 10 weeks. Check the Vista Parents Blog for groups forming or email me if you would like more information, to lead or host one.
  • Vista Parents Blog: As mentioned several times before the Vista Parents Blog is a hub of information for your family with everything from helpful tips, resources, lesson follow ups and important Kids Community updates.
  • Serve: We all go through seasons where serving is hard and requires sacrifice. Jesus is worth that sacrifice — and so are our children. We can trust Him to provide rest and Sabbath while we also serve. Whether it is teaching kids, chaperoning a student event, or serving in Kids Community, let’s remember that little eyes are seeing our actions and believing that they too are called to serve the body of Christ.
  • Family Sunday:  We offer Family Sunday, every 7 weeks or so to allow time for your family to worship and serve together.

Let’s do this together! Its just a phase and we don’t want to miss it.

talk.pray.do – May

 

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TALK

  • Can you name all the fruits of the Spirit? Which comes easily to you? Which one is the hardest?
  • What is Joy? Who is the most joyful person that you know? What do they do that makes you think they are joyful?
  • What is a peacemaker? Who are some peacemakers you know?
  • What does it mean to be patient? Is it hard to be patient sometimes? Why?
  • What is kindness? Who was the last person you showed kindness to?

 

PRAY

Practice the fruits of the spirit this week. Faithfully pray and ask God for help. Do something good for someone. Practice self-control when your emotions or desires are leading you to lose control. Be gentle with your actions and kind with your words.

 

DO

This week join with us on the Vista Parents blog for devotional prompts on how to be a family rooted in the Fruit of the Spirit. Daily devotional posted on the different fruits of the spirits. Enjoy planting the wildflowers together as a family.

 

Join with us on social media using the #KCrooted #talkpraydo

Vista Hilliard

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Vista Families,

In 5 short days the Hilliard Community will have their first gathering at Life Community Church (4400 Cemetery Rd., Hilliard 43026) starting at 6:30pm. I am beyond excited to see how God is moving at Vista. We are seeing leaders press out in missional ways to be apart of this opportunity on the Gospels Edge,  as others step in to fill the gaps. All while families will have the opportunity to worship in their community, given chances to invite their neighbors to our church!

As One Church in Multiple Locations living at the intersection of Jesus and real life – this is a step for all of us to be apart of.  Pastor Brian’s blog post last week helps us narrow in ways we can support this movement.

  • Pray  –  pray for those taking this step, pray for the community, pray for the leaders.
  • Disciple  –  continue to pour into, train and release leaders for Hilliard.
  • ​Step-up  –  as Hilliard leaders turn their focus to Hilliard, step into those spaces created by their absence.  If you see a need, fill it.
  • Repeat  –  as a missional church trying to live at the intersection of Jesus and real life, we’re always going to be in this mode of helping people establish a unique expression of the church in their community.  THIS is the Great Commission!  THIS is the church!

Hilliard, like Worthington and Dublin are just part of the greater Vista Community Church story. I pray that you will join us as we follow God’s lead into a new community. We are all in this Kingdom together! How will your family be apart of this mission?  Will it be praying for the leaders? Stepping into spaces in the absences of leaders? Or will you be apart of the Hilliard Community pressing into where God is leading.