God answers prayers, often in unexpected ways and beyond expectations.
That was the case at First Baptist Church in Hot Springs this past year after getting involved with Bible Drill after a 20-year hiatus from the competition.
The idea for First Baptist Church in Hot Springs to restart Bible Drill developed a couple of years ago when Children’s Minister Heather Murphy felt like they were missing something. She felt they were solid on Bible study, but she said the children did not know how to maneuver the Bible. Determined to find the missing piece, Murphy prayed about it.
God then placed a woman from the church who had been involved in Bible Drill several years ago in Murphy’s path. They prayed a bit more and decided it was Bible Drill that they needed to try.
They picked a weekly date and time for it and went from there, praying for at least 10 to 30 participants. When registration opened the numbers began rolling in. The church registered 100 children, ranging from third to sixth grade.
With more children than anticipated, Murphy said they began to worry about leadership. Would they have plenty of people to help? God had that handled as well. Twenty volunteers dedicated their time to the ministry.
“It was so powerful to see everybody coming together for this and how quickly it rolled out,” Murphy said.
Of the 100 registered, they maintained 80% of attendance. “It’s just incredible,” she said.
Although Bible Drill competitions ended in April, Murphy said they have continued the weekly meetings on Wednesday after school.
“It has really charged our church. It’s just been really good. People are excited about next year,” Murphy said.
In Bible Drill, children and students develop Scripture memory skills while learning the books of the Bible and key biblical passages. The program is designed to allow children and youth to enjoy learning the Bible during low-pressure competition. It builds respect for the Bible and children’s knowledge and confidence in the Bible.
For the 2022-2023 Bible Drill cycle, 35 churches requested Bible Drill materials. One hundred and forty-two children and student participants from 14 churches competed at church and regional level competitions.
Arkansas Baptist State Convention Children’s Specialist Emily Smith said Bible Drill is a great discipleship tool for teaching children and youth God’s Word.
In the book, Nothing Less: Engaging Kids for a Lifetime of Faith by Jana Magruder, the top spiritual influencer for adults still participating in church today was Bible reading being a part of their childhood.
“Bible Drill is a great tool to allow children and students to read the Word, study the Word, and apply the Word,” Smith said.
For more information about Bible Drill, click here.