Hi I’m RiCO
I run the Fuel the 11-13’s ministry here at Eastside.
A few weekends ago I had the privilege of being able to attend KIDS LIFE 08 as a guest leader, a 1 day conference for kids in years 5-6 at Life Church in Mt Eden.
I was slighty apprehensive as I drove up to Auckland, considering the conference was for kids and not even with the age group that I work with but I had heard that Rob Bradbury (Planetshakers Melbourne) was gonna be there and was keen to meet him.
When I arrived at 10am I was pleasantly surprised by the friendly staff and over 100 screaming excited kids getting dropped off by there parents. We were moved into a room where a man dressed up as Uncle Sam, was getting the kids all excited and ready to go into the auditorium. I new nothing of what to expect but was quickly amazed at the days proceedings.
I followed the kids into the Auditorium where I a full band was playing and the kids were all up the front going hard worshiping God, hands in the air, singing and loving it, its looked kinda like a mini Hillsong, but with young kids.
After about 3 song the Children’s Pastor, Stephanie Sewell got up and gave an amazing talk to encourage and excite the kids about what they can do in there world. She told storys of amazing young Christians throughout the world.
As I can remember:
Her first story was about a group of children living in a closed country where you will be put in prison for learning about Jesus, cos it is illegal. One day a group of kids climbed up into the attic and found a radio, turned it on and there was a Christian Radio show. They would sneak up into the roof and listen everyday after school, until one day he gave them the opportunity to ask Jesus into there hearts. So together they all prayed and asked Jesus into there Hearts.
A while later on the radio the man said that Jesus was the great physician and that through him people can be healed. On hearing this the kids immediately thought where are the sick people…”in the Hospital they thought” so they snuck into the hospital, and made there way to the 3rd floor where the sick people were.
They found a man sick, hardly being able to breath seriously ill. The laid hands on him and he was healed and began to walk around the hospital floor. The continued to pray for people on the 3rd floor and when they were finished the whole floor was well.
Another story of a young six year old Evangelist living in the slums of Indonesia who was preaching to his friends and neighbours and seeing them saved. One day he was kit by a bus as he crossed the road by his house. At the funeral the children were not aloud in due to the culture, but when the aid workers arrived the first 3 rows were full of 50 small children, they said
“what are you doing here, you are not aloud to be here!” The kids replied
“how could they not, this boy was the only one who told us about Jesus.
By this stage I was getting pretty excited myself, and wanted to sneak into Waikato Hospital and heal everyone. These stories all showed young kids standing up for Jesus in there lives and leading the way, often before adults. This is when I found out that the Conference was a LEADERSHIP conference for yr 6-7. Then I knew I was in for a treat. You can’t go wrong teaching leadership skills to young people, especially super young people.
After a quick break we had Rob Bradbury, a absolutely crazy mad Kids Pastor from Australia come and talk to us about dreams and how important they are for our lives and as Christians. His way of communicating with the kids was amazing and hilarious, doing voices and acting out silly skits and telling stories from his life. He shared his dream and one of the things was that he had a dog called RiCO. I was like yeahhhhhhhorr then he said it was a dog. But I didn’t care cos it was a great conversation starter.
After this message and lunch we came back and I saw what I really went up there for. I saw the leaders heart for kids to get connected into God and to truly experience him for themselves. Their Pastor Stephanie and Rob Bradbury began to minister to these kids and I saw the true unashamed passion for Christ which a rarely see in adults displayed in such young children.
It excites me from my head to my toes to see people getting excited about God, being filled with the Spirit, praying, seeing people healed and ministering to each other.
May it continue and increase to all the ages.