Parenting is simply one tool God desires to use in discipleship but it is a life changing one…we hope to partner with you in and through this major life event. Therefore, we desire to make the Dedication process more than a passing formality.
It is to that end that we encourage you to engage in the exercises and activities provided below that reflect intentionality, dependence on community and prayerful seeking of God.
PART 1: Getting Started!
Listen to the Introduction Talk #1 below:
- To begin the dedication process, please email Paige Chase to let her know which date you’d like to do the Parent & Baby Dedication, as well as what service time you’d like to dedicate your child. (Scroll down to see dates.)
- Feel free to use your own notebook for each homework assignment, or you can download a worksheet HERE for recording answers and completing each step.
PART 2: Parenting Talks and Homework
Listen to Parenting Talk #2 and then complete the following Homework Assignment:
- First, pray about what you heard from Benji. Pray the God would give you the vision for your child that He desires you to have. Take to heart his statement “100 years from now the only thing that will matter in your child’s life is their relationship with God.”
- Second, write a description of the kind of person you hope your child will become over the next 18 years. Every year on their birthday, review your vision statement. This exercise will give you a chance to evaluate how you’re doing as you lead your child spiritually and to remember the importance of your child’s relationship with their heavenly Father. Perhaps you will also set aside other times in the year to remind yourself of what matters most when it comes to raising your child. In Talk #2, Benji encouraged you to imagine the end with your child…what things do you hope will be true about your child when they leave home? He said,
“Yes, you can include a love for baseball! But, I want you to describe the kind of character that you hope to see in your child. What do you hope to see? Humility, a strong relationship with Christ, a deep concern for others, kindness, a love for truth, a strong work ethic, wisdom? Think about the kind of heart that you want to help develop in him. Who do you want her to become? One thing that I enjoy doing is taking advantage of times like car rides to speak these things into the lives of my daughters. (You are kind, you are generous, you are patient.)”
Listen to Parenting Talk #3 and then complete the following Homework Assignment:
Write down two things that you are going to DO to invest in yourself and the supportive and significant relationships in your life. Maybe you are going to get a babysitter once or twice a month. Maybe your baby goes to bed early so that you have couple or personal time at the end of every day. Maybe you’re going to go for a walk every night after dinner and enjoy God’s creation. These kinds of practical decisions can make a huge impact on your relationships over the long haul. Decide right now what two things you’re going to do and write them down.
Not only is it important to invest in your significant relationships with those who surround you, but you must also invest in your relationship with your heavenly Father. Perhaps you are going to join a small group. Maybe you are going to commit to quiet time three times a week. Make your decision on two things you are going to do to continue growing in your relationship with your heavenly Father and write them down.
Listen to Parenting Talk #4 and then complete the following:
- Homework Assignment: You heard that we value partnership between parents and the church and three ways that is manifest. Discuss and write the answers to the following questions to help you implement these ideas with your family:
- First, you are the primary influence…what steps will you commit to take to use what your child will learn in church to influence them for Christ?
- Second, what’s your plan for making your child’s leaders at church (Preschool-High School) a part of your family’s discipleship team? How will you get to know them and communicate with them so that you are truly partners?
- Third, how will you plug into the children’s ministries program to use your gifts and meet God through this part of His church family?
PART 3: Participate in a Saturday Parent Orientation Event (4-5pm)
The Parent Orientation gathering gives you an opportunity to meet other parents, discuss the answers you’ve written to the above assignments, connect with the pastoral staff and the pastor involved in the Sunday dedication.
- Choose one of the currently available 2015 dates: See dates in “Part 4”
- Please arrange for childcare so that you can enjoy this parent-centered facet of the dedication process.
PART 4: Select a Sunday for your Baby’s Dedication in the Church Service:
The baby dedication celebration combines the work you have done through listening to the talks and completing the homework with intentional commitments by the church for your family. It is an event to mark the dedication of your child in the service.
- Choose one of the currently available Sundays listed below for 2018. (As new dates are scheduled, we will update this list so check back if these do not work for you.)
January 28, 2018 (Parent Orientation Mtg. on Jan 27 at 4pm)
May 6, 2018 (Parent Orientation Mtg. on May 5 at 4pm)
July 15, 2018 (Parent Orientation Mtg. on Jul 14 at 4pm)
October 21, 2018 (Parent Orientation Mtg. on Oct 20 at 4pm)