A little yellow sponge.
A big yellow bird.
A speedy Scandinavian superhero.
I'm talking about SpongeBob SquarePants of Nickelodeon fame; Big Bird, oversized denizen of Sesame Street; and newcomer Sportacus, from Nick Junior's new show, Lazytown. Perhaps you, like many others, fancy these three to be no more than silly characters from popular children's television. Child's play. Right?
Dig beneath their respective spongy, feathery, and spandex-shrouded exteriors, and you'll find the stuff of creative genius. Like them or not, they ride into town each day and enjoy success similar to that of an ice cream man on a hot July afternoon—because the kids come running.
What do they have that we, in children's ministry, don't? A better story? Nope. Those of us entrusted to teach the Bible to kids know that we have the market cornered on powerful stories. Bigger budgets? Well, yes. But that's not the point, either. Do they just want it more? Wrong again. So what is it that makes kids line ...1