USA (MNN) – After years of focusing exclusively on kids’ devotionals, now Keys for Kids is producing a devotional targeted toward teens.
Discovering a Need
With the many Christian resources available in English, Keys for Kids was surprised to consistently receive requests for teen devotionals. Over and over again, parents and ministry partners asked them for devotionals that reached older kids.
Initially Greg Yoder, Executive Director of Keys for Kids, said he told people there were other resources out there. But, he continued to receive the same response.
“They’re saying no, there’s nothing that will take a child from their ninth grade to their twelfth grade year very effectively — and to not only encourage them but challenge them in their walk with the Lord, and eventually help them become apologists for their faith.”
With some further research, those concerns were validated. There were month-long or year-long devotionals, but nothing aimed at bringing kids all the way through their high school experience.
Out of this information came the idea for Unlocked. This devotional series will target teenagers and the range of issues they face every day from the time they graduate middle school to the time they graduate high school.
Yoder explains, “We want to challenge kids where they are in their walk with the Lord. They may be brand new people who are just maybe exploring the Christian faith, well we want to challenge them! And we also want to challenge those who are very strong in their faith and have been walking with the Lord for a long time. And we believe we can do both.”
The Focus: God’s Word
The devotionals will tackle the basics of the Gospel while immersing kids in the actual word of God. The hope is that kids who may have grown up in the Church will see the Bible in a new way and new Christians will gain understanding to solidify their faith.
Really immersing kids in Scripture to seek out answers about God and the Christian life is vital because often people are searching for God without actually seeing what the Bible says.
Yoder says, “Biblical literacy is an issue in the United States, there are a lot of kids who have grown up in Church but very few of them are reading their Bibles and most of them want to follow the Lord but they’re not even interested in reading the Bible to figure out what He even wants.”
Reaching More Kids
In addition to promoting Biblical literacy, Yoder hopes the devotional will target auditory learners. He states that 80% of the world learns by auditory methods.
So in addition to the print version of the devotional, Keys for Kids wants to tackle an audio version of their book. This would pair with an app that allows the students to learn with others. The app would allow them to interact with their peers, ask questions, and help grow each other.
Getting Ready for Launch
This is new territory for Keys for Kids, but the prospects are exciting. They hope to launch the print version in spring 2019, but there is still a lot of work to do.
“We have a beta version of Unlocked right now which has about 14 stories in it. We’re still looking for feedback form teenagers on whether it’s hitting a homerun with them. And so we’re looking for people to volunteer just read these 14 or 15 stories … and say ‘yeah these are good’, or ‘these are bad’, or ‘this is where you need to improve.’”
Yoder continues, “And we’d be happy to send people some free copies of these Unlocked devotionals that we have in Beta form right now to get their feedback so we can begin looking at what we’re producing and see if we’re actually meeting kids needs where they’re at today.”
When asked how people can get involved, Yoder responded, “Pray for this situation, obviously we’re focused on kids 6-12, that’s always been our mantra going into something unique like this is new for us. So we just need prayer, making sure that we have the wisdom we need, the right people in place to accomplish it and of course the right writers in order to communicate the message we’re trying to communicate.”
Visit keysforkids.org/teendevo or call 888-224-2324 to learn more about the devotional Unlocked or to submit a devotional.