So often we jump into our goal-setting for the year ahead that we don’t take the time to celebrate and remember what God has done in the year before. But celebration is a key part of discipleship, growth, and our relationship with God.

In Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster describes celebration, or a spirit of joy, as a spiritual discipline that produces energy, momentum, and strength within an individual and a body of believers. It is the foundation for all other disciplines, as without celebration, practicing the other disciplines becomes dull and legalistic. Celebration brings freedom from “taking ourselves too seriously” (p. 196), alleviates sadness, and gives us a fresh perspective on life. Ultimately, celebration provides the basis for successful spiritual growth and acts as a springboard for moving forward toward our goals.

So as we move ahead into 2022, what are you celebrating? Maybe it’s ministry-related or personal-life-related. Maybe it’s a celebration of something God did in the lives of the kids you served this year. Maybe it’s merely the fact that you made it through another year of ministry in a pandemic.

Here’s what I’m celebrating:

  • Growth – When I asked on Deeper KidMin’s social media what everyone was celebrating in their ministry from 2021, a vast majority of the answers centered around growth. Spiritual growth, physical building growth, team growth, size growth, and so much more. Hearing about the growth that has sprung from the difficulties of 2020 has reminded me of God’s faithfulness and His desire to restore and redeem. 2020 was a tough year, but God showed us in 2021 that He is still working and moving, even in the chaos. We’re celebrating growth at Deeper KidMin too! We served 8,201 kidmin leaders in 86 different countries in 2021, and I’m thankful you were one of them. Over 25,000 resources were downloaded from Deeper KidMin to help you do ministry better. (Here are some of the best sellers from 2021.) We had 8 new Vendors join our team of resource creators, and we launched 2 initiatives that help us serve you better: The DKM High Five Club and the Subscriber Freebie Library.
  • In-person gatherings of leaders – Speaking of growth, one of my favorite ways to grow together is through conferences, and I am PUMPED this week to be in person at the Children’s Pastor’s Conference in Orlando. I’m teaching two breakout sessions this week and if you’re here too, I’d love to connect! I’m looking forward to worshiping together, growing together, and throwing all the confetti (if you know, you know).
  • What’s to come – Finally, I’m celebrating what’s to come in 2022. With excited anticipation, I’m looking forward to how God is going to continue to teach me, grow me, and use me to serve leaders who serve kids. I’ve been finalizing my list of goals for 2022, and I can’t wait to see what God is going to do this upcoming year. I have several more conferences on my calendar, new resources on my brainstorming list, and more leaders to connect with, and I think it’s going to be a blast. (And if you’re working on your goals too, download this free ministry goal setting guide to help you tackle them!)

Whatever you’re celebrating, know that we’re celebrating with you, and we are looking forward to serving you in 2022.

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