If you'll notice in the poll to the right of this post, the following question is asked.
"What is your biggest growth obstacle right now?"
I asked this question because many children's ministries find their attendance plateaued or even declining.
Our children's ministry has plateaued twice where I serve as director. On both occasions, it has been due to lack of space. Either the adult service was full or the preschool area was full. And once you're 85% full, you're done growing until you make a change.
Both times we plateaued, we made a change that put us back on a growth path. Here's what we did.
We started one or more additional services. And as soon as we did that - we started growing again.
Here's some reasons why starting a new service can put you back on a growth path:
It allows you to create more space without having to build space.
As stated above, once you're 85% full, you're going to plateau. You can find out what percentage you're at by comparing your room capacity to how many kids are attending on average.
Here's an example - if your rooms have a capacity to hold 100 kids and you're averaging 85 or more kids, then you've hit a growth obstacle. You've got to create more space.
People want options.
What do you look at closely when you're going to a movie? The times its showing. And the more options the better, right? A movie that has showings throughout the day is going to have a lot more people attend than a movie that only offers one or two viewing opportunities.
The same applies to your children's ministry. The more options you offer, the more people you will reach.
It creates fresh momentum.
Starting a new service forces you to recruit new volunteers, enlist families to shift to the new service, and creatively communicate. All of this can create fresh momentum and excitement.
It catches God's attention.
God is not willing that any should perish. He wants every single boy, girl, mom, and dad in your community to have a relationship with Him.
You see, the deeper issue is not how many people are attending your children's ministry. It's how many are NOT attending. You are surrounded by people who don't attend church anywhere. You are surrounded by people who don't know Jesus. And that's the number that should keep you up at night. That's the reason why you've got to create more space and give people more options.
If your children's ministry is plateaued, it's a great problem to have. But it's not a problem you want to live with. A new service may be just what you need.