Last month the Christian resource sharing website Max7 reached the significant milestone of one million downloads.
The website provides free downloadable Bible resources including curriculum, Bible lessons, powerpoint images, crafts, songs, games, animations and training materials for those working in Christian ministry with children and young people. The website represents a worldwide partnership which seeks to freely serve the work of evangelism, discipleship and helping children and young people “live life to the max, seven days a week with Jesus” – the life described in John 10:10.
Many agencies, churches and individual leaders and resource producers are participating in the Max7 website project, uploading new resources or translating existing resources into their own languages to make them more widely available and useful.
Being ‘open source’ means Max7 isn’t owned by anyone. Instead, anyone around the world can contribute resources to the website allowing others access to them. The significance of this is that people have the opportunity to access resources that are suitable for their context, not having to rely on expensive materials written for a western culture.
All the resources are free and are provided in multiple languages. And they’re having a global impact.
Graham McDonald from Children of the World, a Ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ says, “Because of the Max7 website one million great Bible resources are now in the hands of people in just about every nation. Just one example is that 15 000 school students in Liberia go through lessons downloaded from Max7 each week.”
Bishop Emmanuel Jones, who runs an orphanage in Liberia says, “Only eternity can tell as to how many little hearts are being changed through the lessons from Max7. The Max7 lessons are being taught at over 40 schools in Liberia as a Bible curriculum. Max7 is changing lives.”
In Kenya, Josephine Mutisya, a lecturer at Machakos Teacher’s College says, “I have enjoyed teaching the Max7 lessons to pupils of Katheka Kai Primary. The Max7 material is one of the best that I have ever used to teach Bible to children. The lessons are relevant to our social context, the activities are simple and time sensitive and teaching aids required are cheaply and locally available. The lessons properly addressed the needs of our children.”
Paul Muoki, Eastern Region Coordinator, Scripture Union Kenya writes, “We noticed that in the schools that were implementing the (Max7) program, discipline and performance of the children was getting better. One school in particular was known for indiscipline and poor performance. The school has now changed.”
Max7 is not just about downloading useful resources; it’s about uploading and sharing resources too. Bible Society’s Rick George works in children’s ministry and frequently makes use of the Max7 website, and encourages others to load any resources they’ve developed onto it. He says, “We’ve got to get our resources out to people around the world in kids minsitry who can’t afford even teachers, let alone good resources for their ministry.”
“Max7 is about kingdom building not ministry building, and giving what you’ve got to help others,” says Rick. “As Australian Christians we’re resource rich – Max7 is a good way share them with the world. I think momentum is growing with the website; now it’s reached 1 million downloads, I think it’ll shoot off from there.”