Sunday, October 16, 2011

TOP 5 WORST Church Ideas EVER

Hello Blog Readers.  It is such a beautiful day; I’m torn between going out and doing something productive or hiding with a novel in my room for as long as possible.  I love when both decisions are a Win-Win.  Today was great at church.  Lots of wonderful people letting me know they are praying for me and thinking of me through this pregnancy.  It feels good to be cared about. 

Today I missed preaching because I worked the nursery for ages 3-6.  I work with children a lot at church because I enjoy it and I’m good with children.  Let’s face it I don’t have the skill to be on the building, financial, cooking, or organizing committee(s).  This morning was a HOOT with the youngsters, which gave me inspiration for today’s blog- TOP 5 WORST Church Ideas EVER.

To set the background, one of my strengths is that I am an enthusiastic risk taker!  You want me to try a new idea, stand out from the crowd, do a skit, lead a cheer, and be wild and crazy… I’m your Girl!  The downside is also my WEAKNESS, I’m a risk taker that sometimes lacks common sense.  Since age 18 I have been a member of two churches and visited a third for about a year in between.  During those times I’ve worked a LOT of jobs between VBS, youth trips, children’s message, sunday classes, etc.  Below are the top FIVE (not so planned) ideas I had for church that went a little… well... just BAD quickly.  

1.  Candy Haunted House (today’s inspiration)
The picture on the box.

It’s Halloween Time so of course I saw this cute, fun, haunted, candy house. The kids will love creating it, I will love it, it will be fun fellowship, and the preacher’s wife gave me the GREAT idea to teach the children about different houses and how we act in God’s House.  I thought it to be a perfect recipe for a great church lesson.
So we spoke of Fun Houses, Our Houses, School Houses, Bouncy Houses, Haunted Houses, and God’s House.  In God’s House…we keep our church clean, we don’t run, or yell, or fight, we listen/learn to God’s word, etc.  It was a great lesson, except for the activity afterward included all the things we SHOULDN'T DO in church.  I will also add I didn’t read all the directions about mixing the icing, so it tended to be a little (a lot) runny, messy, yucky… (see picture below)….

Warning- Images are actually worse than they appear. lol.
Need I write anymore?  The haunted house was a disaster that lasted all of five minutes, and the children (with beautiful church clothing) left with icing on their shirts and too much sugar in their bellies. It also left me with 40 minutes where I scrambled for things to do in order to entertain the EXCITED, LOUD, sugar induced group.  I think the little nursery next door was scared of what was happening behind our door (and with good reason).    
Did I mention I forgot paper towels??  Yes people I see it wasn’t thought out clearly.

2. BAD Children’s Church Messages
As part of the children’s message I typically take an object or skit and before the children (and adults) I make a metaphor of how that compares to biblical teachings.  Some ideas include (but not limited to)....
A. the time I needed suntan lotion/SPF to show “God’s Protection”, so I grabbed the tanning lotion I used  (in my 20s) with “tingle”.  I found an image of the bottle online.

First, note the big MARIJUANA LEAF on the bottle- Hemp Body Lotion.  Of course I didn’t notice.  Second, when I rubbed it all over my face no one understood what I was saying because I broke into RED HIVES which lasted the whole Sunday even after two showers (and I mean it was RED and Burning, I had to leave church early). BTW- I no longer tan.
b. the time I did a magic trick, to show Satan’s trickery.  Guess what the kids learned?   Satan isn’t that crafty because the magic trick never worked... no matter how many times I tried it in front of the WHOLE church.
c. the time I threw myself across the dry slip n’ slide in church (and I’m not a skinny girl).  I think I still have hip problems from that day, and who knows about the poor church floor???

3.  Mispronunciations
If your going to teach a group of children or teenagers, please double check and make sure you know what you’re talking about.  There are so many examples of this for me, but these are the top three.
a.  I taught the story of Samson to male youth, teenagers.  Samson, the man whom God gave superpowerful strength.  I called him Samsonite the whole LESSON.   Hey, what’s the big deal, one was a man in the Bible and one is a set of name brand suitcases/luggage….not much of a difference at all.
b. The time I continually called disciples…disciplines.  All of Jesus disciplines followed Him.  All of the disciplines sat in the boat.  The 12 Disciplines were….. (at least that was closer than Samsonite).
His muscles distracted me from his real name.
c.  Did you know Mark and Luke were two of the 12 Disciplines Disciples?  Neither did Jesus, seeing as how it isn’t written in the Bible, but I unknowingly taught the wrong information to a group of children about ten years ago.

4. Reading a Book you DIDN'T PREVIEW First
I remember purchasing a book, Dear God, What Would You Do?,  at a very good price.  The back of the book read like it was a very kid friendly (ages 5-10) about "today’s issues”.  The theme of the Sunday school lesson was about making good decisions and so I thought the book would work great. 
Of course I didn’t realize God would be answering questions about sex, homosexuality, death, alchol, and drug abuse.  No matter where you stand on these issues, I do not find them appropriate for ages 5-10…and I certainly feel every family has the right to approach these in their own sensitive way.  I quickly recovered and moved on, but I found myself in hot water for a few minutes.  The only person that learned about BAD decisions was ME.

5. Serving Grape Juice
If you wanted to talk about Jesus’ first miracle (turning water to wine) to a VBS group of 60 children between the ages of 2-12, what would you do?? 

Hey I know, I will pour 60 small shot glasses of grape juice and give them out so that they can stain their clothing, the church pews, carpet, and it will make them so WILD they will ignore everything I say while they throw their cups in the floor!  (I’m not sure those who help CLEAN the church have forgiven me yet.)

I would end by saying DON”T DO THIS…But I’m pretty sure most people are too smart to even think of doing it anyway.   Happy Sunday and Happy Risk Taking!


  1. I just LOVE this post!! Even though I laughed so hard that I cried while reading it, I can certainly sympathize with you. I just love you Amanda and thoroughly enjoy reading your posts.

  2. Teresa, THANK YOU, I'm so glad I have people in my life that can laugh with me. So far, no matter how foolish I can be...I can always laugh! :)