Since 1998, for some reason that I cannot fully explain, I have been dreaming of ways to make a positive impact on kids before their teenage years. Specifically, my desire has been to encourage meaningful conversations between kids and those who care about them the most. I am thankful to have had many meaningful conversations with my dad growing up–conversations about weighty matters such as faith, character, purpose, and impact.
In January 2009, I started a company called Kingdom Scene Endeavors. Our goal is to encourage faith, values, and significant conversations in kids’ lives before their teenage years in culturally relevant ways. This has led us to produce a fun virtual world game online called Lightgliders that offers connection points with parents and mentors as well as optional faith and values activities.
Throughout this entrepreneurial journey, I have been asked often where the name “Kingdom Scene” came from. Well, the name has a definition and a story behind it.
First the definition…
In simplest terms, a ‘kingdom scene’ is a situation where God’s love or truth is proclaimed or demonstrated in practical and selfless ways. (A deeper look at this definition is explored in Part II….stay tuned.)
And now the story…
In 2007, I was in graduate school taking seminary and business school classes. Others from the school would meet at my apartment each week for a regular Bible study. We rotated leadership and whoever led the study could choose the topic discussed. Needless to say, we had a variety of topics covered over the weeks and months. When it was finally time for me to lead, I was somewhat frustrated. It felt a bit redundant and comfortable for seminary students to meet to talk about the Bible…again. We were reading and discussing the Bible each day anyway. I felt this needed to change even for just an evening.
So, I led a very short Bible study (we’re talking ten minutes) on the kingdom of God. We discussed how Jesus’ message centered on God’s kingdom (Matthew 4:17), how we are to seek the kingdom above all things (Matthew 6:33), and how God’s kingdom is intimately connected to Jesus (Luke 17:21). We talked about Jesus’ admonition that we proclaim him (Matthew 28:18-20) and demonstrate love for God and others (Matthew 22:37-40). Then we divided up into small groups with the instructions to take a field trip and encourage a situation where the kingdom of God is experienced. No further instructions were given except that everyone had to be back in 30 minutes. Honestly, I couldn’t give any more instruction because I really didn’t know what I asking everyone to do. Thankfully, they figured it out.
After a half hour, groups came back really excited. One team went to the local grocer and paid the groceries of those in line saying that they just wanted to be a blessing to some folks tonight. A man stepped out of line and asked for prayer. He had just come from the emergency room. The group prayed for his peace and healing. In tears, the man said, “This was meant to be.” The checkout lady even told the group, “This is the best night we’ve ever had here.”
Another group knocked on the door of the teenaged Mormon missionaries who lived in my apartment complex. The group said, “You guys knock on our doors all the time, we thought that we would do the same. Come hang out with us or check out our Bible study some time.” Those 19-year-old missionaries came the following week and each week after for the next few months until they moved to a new city. In a season where they were experiencing rejection and homesickness, they found some new friends.
The excitement and encouragement that exuded from these 30-minute field trips spurred many more local “mission trips.” It dawned on me that these were very simple but wonderful proclamations and demonstrations of God’s love. I began to call them “kingdom scenes.”
Our dream as a company is to help kids know, grow in, and show God’s love in ways in which they were uniquely created. We want to see ‘kingdom scenes’ in and through young people. Kids can change the world and, when they pursue and reflect God’s love, they do.
Choosing a name for our company became the easiest job in the world.
PS Thanks for reading our first blog post!