You may be familiar with Deuteronomy 6. In verse 5, Moses says to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength”. This command is followed by a simple and solid plan for family faith summed up in one phrase:
Teach kids throughout the day about the things of God.
Throughout scripture we are reminded to share our faith by intentionally integrating it into family life, making it personal and passing it down through the generations.
This is the premise behind, and the promise within, GrowthRings™.
We believe the concept of GrowthRings™ can revitalize ministry, rekindle intergenerational faith and begin to mend the ever-widening church-home gap.
Just behind the protective bark of any tree, you’ll find circular layers of growth. Each of these growth rings represents one year of the tree’s existence and experience. These rings are fed from below as a continuous flow of nutrients travel up and down the core of the tree, establishing it’s growth and development. Narrow rings signify minimal growth. Wide rings represent impressive growth. Rings with dents or dark scars tell the story of that tree’s year--perhaps a lightning strike, lack of water or wind damage. Basically, the rings of a tree tell it’s story.
People have these rings as well.
With each passing year, we experience a new season of growth based on what goes on in, and around, us. As children grow and develop, their stories are revealed in each incremental ring. Some rings are strong and vibrant, others may be narrow and damaged as outer forces exert stress. It’s the compilation of these rings that tell our story.
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GrowthRings™ are individual stories of faith, broken down into recognizable seasons of spiritual growth and development.
The backbone of GrowthRings™ is creativity and practical-thinking. The 20 “fruits” we’ve identified are based on the Bible first, research second, and finally extensive trial and error through first-hand ministry experience.
20 “fruits” were identified as Biblical benchmarks for each of the GrowthRings™.
Scripture is at the root of each ring’s desired objective.
Theories of growth and faith development impact the ways in which each ring is implemented.
Perspectives of leaders, parents and children form practical objectives throughout GrowthRings™.
Age-appropriate opportunities to produce these fruits were (and are still being) developed.
In addition, these 20 fruits are designed to cross denominational and generational lines, providing a consistent and comprehensive approach that has the potential to unify, and therefore advance, the church as a whole.
The foundation of GrowthRings™ is the sharing of simple, intentional, spiritual growth opportunities with the kids, families and community. Visually represented by the incremental rings of growth on a tree, we see faith strongly rooted in God’s Word, led by parents and supported by the community. Growth and maturity takes place each year, ultimately producing new fruit. This process establishes a God-glorifying future of faith that is strong and sustainable.