USA (MNN) – For the 76 years Keys for Kids has been opened, the ministry has primarily focused on ministering to kids in the four to fourteen window. But now, they’re starting up devotionals for a new age group: teens.
“We didn’t want to do teen ministry actually,” Keys for Kids’ Greg Yoder shares.
“It’s a hard group to reach because it’s ever-changing.”
However, the ministry was repeatedly approached and asked how they were reaching teens. Yoder says camps said they needed devotional materials for teenagers and he assumed there were enough devotional materials out there to reach the age group. But, the camps said otherwise.
Yoder shares camps said, “There’s not anything that will take them from their ninth-grade year to their twelfth-grade year and there isn’t really anything that goes in depth. A lot of things are very ethereal and make them feel good, but nothing really focuses in on letting kids know that they need a savior, letting them know that they can have a relationship with Him and then becoming defenders of their faith. That really is missing in a lot of teen devotionals.”
Keys for Kids decided to proceed and are in the planning stages of creating the Keys for Kids Next Initiative, which will focus on ministering to teens and getting them to be interactive with one another in their faith.
One part of the Keys for Kids Next Initiative is their devotional, which will be called ‘Unlocked’.
This devotional will feature true and fictional stories from individuals, poetry, and writing pieces from young people who want to contribute.
So far, the ministry has assembled about 14 stories that will be included in the devotional.
Soon, they will gather together focus groups consisted of teens and youth leaders to determine if the devotional will meet their needs.
Yoder says the ministry will use theological reviewers to help with the process and have leaders who are experienced in working with youths to guide teens as well. But their vision for this devotional and for the Keys for Kids Next Initiative is to get peers talking to peers.
Keys for Kids hopes to release ‘Unlocked’ by next June.
But, that’s just one part of the Keys for Kids Next Initiative.
Next Initiative App
“It’s not going to be just a book. That wouldn’t effectively help us reach kids,” Yoder says.
“We’re printing the books to kind of be the hook to get the kids involved and then we’re going to be producing this really cool app. And the app is obviously delivering the material. It’ll have audio, but then our dream is to make sure that there’s interactivity that we can create.”
The main idea behind the interactivity is having teen and youth group chat rooms so teens can share their story, learn from others, and from their leaders so that ‘iron is sharpening iron’.
With the app, comes an even larger opportunity to share the Gospel with teens.
“Once we have the English in place, there have been many in the international community that have said we need something for teens too and if you get something done, we want to translate it.”
Teens all over the world will then have a devotional and app that will effectively help guide them in their walk with Christ.
This project is not a light undertaking, but it will be an effective one.
Keys for Kids invites you to help teens in the United States and across the globe to grow deeper in their faith.
Help sponsor the Keys for Kids Next Initiative devotional and app project.
“This is a project that is going to require some significant funding, but the great news is once we have it initially funded, it’s going to be self-supporting,” Yoder says.
Also, pray for the Lord’s provision and that He will speak through this devotional and app, making a great difference in teen’s lives.