Upstreet Underground

What is Orange?

“Imagine the difference if..                                                      
was on the same page, working toward the same end. What if we we all believed our mission was to incite wonder, provoke discovery, and fuel passion in the heart of every child as they grow into authentic faith in Jesus?”

Eighty-eight percent. Maybe more. Maybe less. This is the percentage of kids estimated to abandon church entirely once they graduate from high-school. Not 88% of ALL kids mind you, since many kids are never introduced to church ever.  No, this is 88% of kids who have grown up IN church. They heard God loved them. They heard Jesus died for them.  They heard they all about Noah, David, Paul, John, and the rest of the cast of the Bible. They heard it all. They just don’t care.

They are struggling to find relevance in the church, and questioning the necessity of any relationship with God.  The world around them has a louder voice and the church is being pushed further and further away.  Simply put….when church alone is expected to impact and transform a kids life, statistics show nearly total failure.

So what do we do?  We change our thinking..and our strategy.

We start thinking ORANGE.

If we can visualize the family as the warm, loving, accepting part of the equation represented by the color RED….and Jesus Christ, the light of the whole world represented by the color YELLOW…then the intersection of these two separate, yet equally important parts, yields ORANGE ministry.

If a child attends church twice a week, every week, for an entire year, the church will will have around 110 hours of quality time invested in that child’s life.  During that same period of time, parents will be afforded over 3000 hours!  The question is not whether church or parents have more influence; parents win hands down.  The question is how will the church partner with parents and equip them to lead their child into a growing relationship with Jesus. We believe what happens at home is far more important than what happens at church. Therefore structuring ministry in a way that never competes for time, and always supports the parents first, allows for a deeper and more authentic family ministry opportunity. At the same time, when parents assume roles within family ministry (small group leaders, worship leaders, storytellers etc) it gives them confidence and knowledge to connect and invest spiritually with their own kids in ways they never thought possible.  Combining the efforts of the family and the church yields greater results than both parties working on their own.

In the past ministries shut out the parents.  Basically children and student ministry was treated like dry cleaning…drop off your kid, go get “fed” in big church, pick up your kid, hope they learned something.  If not, its okay; so long as your kids number never shows on the screens and interrupts the service everything’s good! Parents were just as guilty.   Drop’ em off and run!  Sunday school lady will teach them all they need to know.  But if she doesn’t, its okay; so long as your kids number never shows on the screens and interrupts the service everything’s good!   ORANGE thinking is a dramatic shift away from “What can you do for me?” and replaces it with “What can we do together?”.

“100 years from now, the only thing that will matter is a child’s relationship with Jesus Christ”-Reggie Joiner, founder ReThink Group. If we believe this….if we truly believe that nothing on earth is more important than a child’s relationship with Jesus, then we have no option but to shift our entire mentality away from a failed, outdated mode of reaching kid.  ORANGE is about integrating two great influences: the church and the family. Divide and conquer only works in war games but this isn’t war. It’s life. It’s love.


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