The Middle School years are some of the most challenging years for those students within your ministry. Middle School students sometimes can have a bad reputation within our ministries. Throughout the years I have found the value in our sixth to eighth graders and here are five ways that you can value you Middle School students.
Middle Schoolers bring Energy
One of the main things that I love about the Middle School students is that they have energy and life. Every week I have students who run in who are excited to come into the church. Why? Because they do not care about what other people think about them, but more importantly they are trying to find out their identity. Middle School students want to play games and participate in activities. They want to answer questions being asked in small groups. When you see a student answering every question, see it as a positive because they want to participate.
Answering questions and raising their hands brings energy to your ministry because students are listening to your message. In my setting of ministry, I have found that the Middle School students answering questions and participating in small groups cause our High Schoolers to step up to lead and participate.
Middle Schoolers bring Technology
We all know that technology changes every day it seems. All the changes in technology cause apps on phones to be created and our students to use their phones within the student ministry. I have found that having Middle Schoolers in ministry helps you to stay up to date with technology.
When new apps come to the app store students come and ask me if I played the latest game or have the new app that came out. Why is that important? It allows for there to be a bonding relationship made within our ministry. It allows for me to find new ways to communicate and minister to the students that God has given to me. The more technology that your students introduce to you the better. Do not see it as a threat or a negative, but in every form of technology is another way for you to minister to students.
Middle Schoolers bring Questions
I love the questions that come out of the students within our ministry. Middle School students and in particular younger Middle School students are not worried about what other people think about them. As the students get older and in eighth grade, they begin to worry about what other people think of them more. When that happens, you will see the students come to you or your staff privately to ask questions.
Questions are a great thing, and when they are asked of you or your staff, it means someone values you and your volunteers. Allow Middle School students ask questions because it will lead to them trusting and valuing your team more. Later in ministry, you will be thankful you earned their trust when they were in their Middle Years.
Middle Schoolers bring Momentum
In your ministry, you will see momentum begin within your Middle School ministry. Not saying it will not come first to a High School ministry, but when your Middle School students buy in and experience God, they bring momentum to your whole ministry.
When we take our Middle School students away on our yearly Middle School retreat, our goal has always been to train and build leadership skills within our students. Why? When you make momentum to your Middle School students, it allows them to take that same energy into their High School years. We must let our Middle School students lead now because it will enable them to form leadership skills and take ownership. When students take ownership, you will begin to see momentum occur within your ministry.
Middle Schoolers are Real
Lastly, Middle School students are real and have no reason to be fake with us. Authenticity is something to be valued. When you ask a Middle Schooler what they think, you will hear the truth from them. You may not always like what you hear back, but remember they are real with you.
Allow your students to be authentic, and that will then lead them to stay authentic through every year of your student ministry. I have a student that I allowed to be authentic and genuine with me in 8th grade. Now, he is a senior in High School, and he can still be real with me and honest. When we allow our students and encourage authenticity, you will see students have value within your ministry.
Each of these five things by themselves is valuable, but when combined they bring value to your ministry. Students are not looking for just another student ministry; they are seeking a place where they have a voice and are valued. Allow your students to serve, be real, and set momentum. Because at the end of the day, it is their ministry, not ours.
The following list is in no specific order, but these are books that we think you need to read as a Youth Pastor. Every Quarter we will update the reading lists, but these are the five books we recommend for any Youth Pastor, Youth Worker, and Youth Volunteer to read. Disclaimer: Not all books were written or published in within the last 1-2 years, but are books we think will help you as a Pastor.
The Grown-Up's Guide to Teenage Humans written by Josh Shipp:
Reading this book through the lens of a Student Pastor and a Youth Worker will change the way you interact with students. I have found my conversation and leadership change because of reading The Grown-Up's Guide to Teenage Humans.
Stop Dating the Church by Joshua Harris:
I know that Harris’ book takes us back to 2004, but over this past quarter, I have found myself opening up this book to reread to help me connect students back to the church. Teenagers within our student ministries bring different baggage, struggles, and demands of their life. I found that reading Stop Dating the Churchhelped me to write messages to help students fall in love with the church and see the purpose of the local church. I recommend reading through this book while writing a sermon series on the importance of student ministry and the local church.
The Myth of Balance by Frank Bealer:
Let me say that my life and ministry have changed because of The Myth of Balance. As a Student Pastor or a Youth Worker, you need to read this quick read by Frank Bealer. I have made changes in my life because of the approach is given by Bealer towards balance, “When this, Then that.” Every Youth Pastor should read this and use the notes section to write your equation using the formula provided. Bealer offers a lot of great insight and contains an excellent notes section at the end of the book to work through some scenarios to work through ministry and life.
Speaking to Teenagers by Doug Fields and Duffy Robbins:
In 2007 Fields and Robbins put out what I believe to be one of the most helpful books to help Pastors, Student Pastors, Youth Workers, and Youth Volunteers speak to teenagers. I frequently pick up Speaking to Teenagersto help me remember some different tools to help me grow and become an effective speaker to students. Since reading this book three years ago, I now have a box that sits under my desk for me to put illustrations and sermon ideas in daily that I come across. I have found myself asking more questions to make sure that I am helping students understand the message and grow in their walk. I also would recommend making a three-year strategy that Fields and Robbins recommend. I have seen ministries become organized and strategic and lead to students becoming engaged in weekly messages.
You Lost Me by David Kinnaman:
We are getting to the point of the year when our seniors begin to check out of ministry and school as they prepare for college. At the same time, a great our Juniors are beginning to experience the early taste of Senioritis. I think that Kinnaman’s is an excellent read for this time of the year to help Student Pastors to become strategic in keeping students from getting disconnected from the local church. I personally think the foundation begins in 7th grade, but I think reading You Lost Me will help Pastors equip teenagers to have a long lasting faith post high school and college graduation.
I am Currently Reading for June’s List: Remodeling Youth Ministry by Christopher Talbot.
In the days we live in, the words social media brings negative and positive emotions to pastors. I love social media. I think there are things within social media that can become negative. Using social media in ministry can become a game changer and open the doors to allowing visitors and prospective church members learn more about your ministry.
Below are ways that the local church can make an impact through Social Media.
Promote Services One of the weekly posts we do within our student ministry is to publish and promote our weekly services weekly. Students and adults have a lot going on within their lives between sporting events and extra-curricular activities during different seasons of the year. Because of the craziness of schedules, it is crucial to weekly remind (on the day of the service) to tell people to come and join you for worship. I schedule out my text messages and posts to happen on specific days to reach people. Both students and adults have shared that our social media posts helped them remember our weekly service.
One other idea that I implement through promoting our services is a one minute or less invite to students/adults or a graphic from our current sermon series to help grab someone’s attention. Be creative and allow social media promote your weekly schedule or services.
Share Bible Verses I am a huge fan of the YouVersion Bible app our phones. I have found the Bible app very useful to read the Bible on the go or even have a voice read the bible to me while I drive. When I am using the YouVersion app, I have found it very useful to create and use images to share Bible verses with people on different social media platforms. I would encourage you as a Pastor, a volunteer, or a church staff to share out Bible verses for future services to help prepare your congregation for the upcoming church service. Let us take it one step further, share Bible verses also to promote church events, vision, and future retreats.
Go on a Missions Trip via Social Media Social media has become in my personal opinion one of the primary communication tools used today. If the majority of communication in the world is happening on social media, why then is the church not using it to advance the Gospel message.
A few years ago I came up with this radical idea, what if we sent our teenagers on a missions trip online. Well, that idea led to producing material that allows other churches to send their students on an online missions trip. I have included the link below if you are interested in learning more or buying the material from Download Youth Ministry.
Promote Events I use social media to promote every event that we do within our ministry. I have found that the more visual avenues we give to reach our students, the more natural they remember dates and events. I would recommend being creative and provide the students with a place to sign up for events. There are many different ways to create an innovative or artsy post, but if you are like me and have no creative bone in your body, then I have an original tool for you. When I make a post to promote an event I use canva.com or the iPhone app Canva. The majority of the items on Canva are free, but some things may cost you a dollar or two. Canva has been a lifesaver for our ministry, and we use it daily within our ministry.
Engage and Follow Up with Visitors One of the last ways that Social Media can make an impact on your ministry, following up with visitors. We have our social media accounts set up to serve as a tool to follow up with visitors and to help get them connected to our church. After a student visits, we try to communicate with them on social media and let them know about some of the upcoming events going on within our ministry. Once a visitor has been connected with us on Social Media we try to connect them with an upcoming event and even scholarship them to come. Why? Because we want to help them get connected with other believers or if they are non-Christians we want to have a place to hear the Gospel Message.
One of the most significant ways to impact members, visitors, and even the community is to post regularly. I schedule and plan out a month ahead time for my posts. Why? Because I want to make sure I have regular posts that impact lives around us.
As a college student, I have learned the importance of disciplining yourself to get things done. To get things done, I have to write out all of my assignments, make a schedule on when I’ll get things done, and set aside time for hanging out with friends and family. If I don’t, I’ll catch myself slacking off, procrastinating, and forgetting work. These lead to more stress, which leads to me getting sick and having to cut out time with friends. I learned that it took both a will and effort to get through college well. That same concept is applied to our faith. We have to spiritually discipline ourselves to read God’s Word, to pray, and to commune with other believers.
Donald Whitney opens his book Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life with the statement “Discipline without direction is drudgery.” Before you begin to simply force yourself to read the Word and pray, you might want to consider why you are doing it. It’s like an athlete knowing that all their practice will guarantee to win the championship or a musician knowing that their hard work would earn them performance in Maddison Square Garden. Once we know that the outcome of our spiritual disciplines is becoming like Christ, we can know that it is all worth it. The ultimate goal of spiritually disciplining ourselves is Christlikeness.
So, why is staying in God’s Word something that is so important to be considered a spiritual discipline? Reading the Bible helps us learn and understand, helps us grow, and encourage us. Psalm 119:105 tells us that God’s Word is a lamp for our feet and a light on our path. God’s Word gives us direction and Psalm 1:2-3 tell us that meditating on the law is like being a tree planted by the stream of water, so it wields fruit and does not wither. Just in these few verses can we see that reading the Bible helps us understand and grow. In the New Testament, the writer of Hebrews says that the Word is “quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the diving asunder of soul and spirit, and the joints and marrow, and a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12).
The Word of God is living and powerful. Faith comes by hearing the word of Christ (Romans 10:17). Without the Bible, we wouldn’t be able to have access to Christ’s saving words, we wouldn’t be able to have direction, we would be missing an essential part of our faith.
“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
The following list of 5 books are books that over the last few months I have found pivotal for parents who have a teenager. I have compiled this list as a Youth Pastor sharing some resources with parents. Any questions or comments you can leave below in the comment section.
1. The Grown-Up's Guide to Teenage Humans written by Josh Shipp:
Josh Shipp’s book has genuinely changed ministry and life for me. Somewhere in late September of 2017, this book crossed my desk as a must read for Youth Pastors and Parents. Yes, it is lengthy, but Josh who is well educated and researched put out a book that talks through challenges of communicating, understanding a teenage mindset, and he works with specific age ranges. I have seen this book help parents have better conversations and relationship with their teen.
2. Stop Dating the Church by Joshua Harris:
I know that Harris’ book takes us back to 2004, but over this past quarter, I have found myself opening up this book to reread to help me connect students back to the church. Teenagers within our student ministries in America bring different baggage, struggles, and demands of their life. I found that reading Stop Dating the Churchhelped me to write messages to help students fall in love with the church and see the purpose of the local church. I recommend reading through this book and having a conversation with your children.
3. Stoked: 6 Questions to Fuel your fire for Jesus by Chase Snyder:
I have recently discovered Stoked, but I have found that working through these 6 Questions will help parents and students to grow in Christ. The 6 questions will take you on a six-week journey to fuel your fire for Jesus. I would recommend working through this book with your child and journaling along with them. I truly believe you will see great spiritual conversations and help you connect with your teenager.
4. The end of me by Kyle Idleman:
The end of mehas become a book that I have seen change perspectives within teenagers lives. Kyle Idleman walks through the sermon on the mount and helps his readers to take the focus off of me and put the emphasis on Jesus. I love the generation of teenagers that stand before us daily, but a huge struggle I see amongst this generation is an inward focus on everything. Some teenagers are choosing themselves and their comforts over Christ. Idleman’s book will help them see a different perspective of their Christian walk.
5. Goliath Must Fall: Winning the Battle Against your Giants by Louie Giglio:
Giglio has put out what I believe is the best book ever written on dealing with fears, anxiety, depression, and failures. I think parents should talk through this book with their children as they battle giants within their life. The conversation I have had with students around this book has helped students realize that their battle has been conquered by Christ. Giglio works through 1 Samuel and Psalm 23 through the lens of the New Testament. I highly recommend this book for you to read and also share it with your teenager.
Disclaimer: Not everything shared in these books is held by the contributors or the leaders of Ministry Win.
I started writing this blog a few weeks ago with a goal in mind for all student ministries in America. I think that Generation Z stands at the doorsteps of our church and community in need of wanting more from our ministries. I know that may seem very vague or general, but students do not want to be part of something that we did in the church 15-20 years ago. They want something that has been written or created for them.
Today’s blog has the goal of helping each Student Pastor become stronger in reaching students and helping them find a place to belong and serve the local church. Below I have labeled what I believe is the final three categories for understanding Generation Z.
Generation Z wants the local church and ministries to provide more creativity and uniqueness. They have seen the church mature in different areas since they have been alive, but they want the student ministry to also mature in the way they are set up. What do I mean by being more creative or unique?
What makes your ministry different from the one 3-5 miles down the road? If you are not sure, then start by taking a few moments to figure out what makes your ministry unique. CATC Student Ministry where I serve we have some things that make our ministry unique. I have never served in a Student Ministry similar to where I am serving now. We are a diverse ministry where we have 6 different language communities that exist within our Student Ministry. Our Student Ministry has Students leaders who are in the 9th-12th Grade who help oversee our Outings, Social Media, Greeting team, and Outreach. Our MDWK Service was designed to be a place where students can bring friends for crazy games, fun video announcements, where we worship in song and dive into topics the students are working through regularly.
Our ministry understands the need for creativity, and we created crazy games to play as students arrive, but we also learned that our students like taking notes and studying in their own time. Because we understand that need within Generation Z, we train our students to ask questions and dive deeper into the text than just the surface level.
I know that your ministry is unique and has some fantastic things going on within the community. Use that to your advantage as a Student Pastor. I would also recommend you to give the students ownership of the ministry. Allow them to use their creative skills to be applied to the student ministry.
If you have been doing student ministry for any time at all, you know that students love their phones and being on social media. I would say that you need to be creative in the way that you share about things happening in your student ministry. I have found that using social media has led to us reaching more students.
I have been using different applications, but one website called later.com has been a huge timesaver. Our ministry plans out the weekly posts ahead of time and all I need to do is schedule it a week or two in advance, and the posts go out. I would recommend you using social media as a tool for reaching students. But, let me dive a little deeper, only use Facebook to posts things for parents, church members, and adults within your ministry. If you want to make an impact on students in Generation Z, then look to Twitter for more conversational pieces and Instagram or Snapchat.
While researching Generation Z one of the things that came up was that teenagers are using Twitter as their primary source to talking with fellow peers. Why? According to one Generation Z student, “I use Twitter most to communicate with friends in the same age group, with very little parent users.”
Generation Z has social media outlets for different things, and each platform serves its purpose within their lives. The church needs to use every avenue we can to reach out to engage this generation. There a lot of ways to be creative and promote events, but whatever you do make sure you are creating posts that will catch their eyes and interests.
We have used our social media to promote our mid-week services because we can use a one-minute video, a snapshot, or even the logo to share in the description that we will be talking about anxiety, stress, and why the Bible is essential. I would recommend using your social media outlets as a tool for engaging and reaching a Generation who is looking to own their belief system.
Generation Z stands at a crucial time for each of our student ministries where we serve. I know that for the last 15 years I have been doing ministry, I say, “The student ministry exists for students to serve fellow students.” But the reality is, I have caught myself promoting my ways for ministry, and have at times kept our students back from full ownership of ministry. Recently over the last few years, I have come across some fantastic resources that have helped me to create a ministry where I can allow the students to have full ownership and I assist and help mentor students to ministry to fellow students.
The generation before us today in our ministries are looking for ownership of their student ministry. They want to serve as leaders, small group teachers, help run media, be in charge of the social media accounts, and they want to help seek the vision of the Student Ministry be accomplished. I would highly recommend that we as their pastors begin to allow the students to have ownership within our ministries. We need to walk beside them and disciple them, but they must have ownership of the Student Ministry. Why? Because when they become active leaders in the church in their teen years, they begin to stay in leadership roles doing ministry post-graduation of High School and College.
Let us love and treasure Generation Z.
Corey Seemiller and Meghan Grace, Generation Z Goes to College (San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2016), 79.
Student ministry stands at a very pivotal time where we have before us a new generation rising within our ministries. Generation Z has been a generation we are learning about recently, and we as ministries have a choice, are we going to adapt to this new generation or keep doing what we were doing?
I would say that the wise thing is that we begin to change and adapt to a new generation that sits in our ministries regularly. Reading through many books over the last 10-12 months, I have learned a lot, and I think that for each ministry to grow, they need to know about their students.
Generation Z has one of the shortest attention spans in history. Why does that matter? We must be applying that knowledge to our games, messages, and our discipleship methods. The attention span could be looked at as a negative, but I think that we can use this information as a positive thing. We can realize that we need to apply different angles and illustrations at specific points to keep students attentive. I know that we do that now but think about adding more examples and application points throughout your message to keep the attention span of the students. When we begin to use illustrations and application points, it allows for students to relate and be drawn back in.
Mentorship is a key within Generation Z. They have a lot of questions, and they are in the midst of battling things in their life, and they need to have someone pour into their lives and help answer these questions they are fighting with daily. I was reading in Meet Generation Zby James Emery White recently about Generation Z, and one thing that stood out was that they are leaderless and looking everywhere to get their information about tough questions they are battling with daily.
We as a ministry and a church need to begin to walk beside them help them figure out the answers to these questions. The local church has potential to invite Generation Z to come into the worship facility and serve. This generation possibly beats out the millennials when it comes to giving back and community service. I have implemented ways within our local church to invite students to come in and serve.
Our churches need to create jobs and responsibilities for students to come in and serve. It is a creative way to disciple students but also helps them to serve right away in the local church. I have found that this has led to students get plugged in and have significant ownership within our student ministry. I think we need to meet with students and have them study God’s word, but also give them a place to live out their faith and talents within the church.
David Kinnaman in You Lost Me writes, “I believe we need to change from an industrialized, mass-production, public-education approach and embrace the messy adventure of relationship. We need a new set of ideas and practices based on apprenticeship.”
Work Ethic/Online Connection
Generation Z is plugged into technology, and that also means that their work ethic is affected by technology. I am a millennial, and I am excited to see a shift and a change in the work ethic being driven by technology. Generation Z will be and already has broken down the traditional work ethic and times. Working 9-5 hours are becoming null and void as this generation is constantly plugged in and can work whenever and wherever. Office hours will change, and the traditional workplace will look different. But what does this have to do with Student Ministry you ask?
Well, it has everything to do with Student Ministry. We need to use technology and have online connection points to reach students. I know that students have school, sports, jobs, and extra-curricular events pulling at their lives. Due to the constant pressures and students having a different work ethic the church must create ways to reach still and impact students.
Some creative ways to reach students would be to have a videocast set up once a week to recap what was shared in a small group or the weekly worship service. This will allow students to recap the service after the event and still be plugged in. A second option would be to have digital resources for students to work through online to have them stay active within the Student Ministry on their own time.
No matter what resources you come up with, you will be doing more to reach Generation Z. Let us as Student Pastors become creative in our approach to guide students daily in their Christian walk.
I have been wondering for some time about the students that come into our youth room every week. I wonder what battles they are facing, or what they bring to the building weekly. I began to look into some books on Generation Z because I wanted to understand better the generation that sits in our buildings regularly.
I wanted to write a three-week blog on understanding the students in your ministry because I think that we take for granted the chances we have to study the teenagers and people walking into our ministries. For example, how many of us as Student Pastor’s enjoy writing out a full conversation with a student in emoji’s? Generation Z, the students born after 1995-2010, love having the conversation in emoji’s. If we do not include emojis into our text, messages, social media posts, and twitter posts, we may miss or disconnect with these students. I wrote out a full sermon on an Emoji Christmas about a year ago. I took the Christmas story and wrote it in emoji’s so teenagers could understand the Christmas Story, but if I am, to be honest, I wrote it because I wanted them to share the Gospel and the Christmas message to their friends.
One of the things I have learned about this generation is that they have grown up living in a post 9/11 world and a place where the recession has almost always existed. I think about how they live in a different world than we did when we grew up as Millennials, Generation X, or Baby Boomers. The students are coming into our ministries with a mindset of being hard workers, trying to prove themselves, and carrying a lot of weight on their shoulders and minds.
Our job as Student Ministers could not be more critical than right now. Students are not looking for a ministry which has everything figured out and always perfect. The teenagers we are talking about are messy, and they bring in questions that possibly no one else is wanting to ask. Generation Z students are looking for a person and a ministry to walk beside them as they are working through the battles in their life.
Reading through five books throughout 2018 on Generation Z, I have learned that the church has begun to lose a footing with these students. We are now seeing a rise of the nones, the religiously unaffiliated, occur before us. I would encourage the local Student Ministries to keep preaching the Gospel message and to think outside of the box to reach these students. I would tell you to meet students at their schools, coffee shops, or my favorite Chick Fil A. I have seen students open up, ask tough questions, and work through different topics because of meeting them outside of the church.
Generation Z has entered into our ministries. It is time for us to reach this new generation with the Gospel message now. We will look over the next two weeks over ways we can adapt or adopt ways to reach Generation Z. I wanted to give a quick overview and thoughts on this generation before we dived into ways we can reach a population that is 25% of the USA population. Let us begin to pray for this generation and that God would raise this generation up to bring a revival to America.
A good leader is not a perfect leader. Think about it, all the leaders you have ever looked up to. Perhaps this is a pastor, a family member, or teacher. But not one of them was perfect. Everyone is flawed. The person I looked up to the most growing up was, and still is, my older brother. Yet, he is far from perfect and will be quick to admit to it. A good leader is not an ideal leader. Instead, a good leader is one that is genuine, authentic, and invests in others through building relationships with them. Broken, flawed people make some of the best leaders because they are not afraid to learn from their mistakes and allow others to learn from them as well. This may be an idea that you have heard many times before, but it is a whole different game actually to start to build these relationships.
I recently had the chance to go to London through a trip with my school. While we were there, we got hands-on experience in building these types of relationships. Our contact in London told us that the people we would be talking to were hungering for a connection, for the community, and that London is one of the loneliest cities because of the lack of community. Learning how to build relationships with college students in London from all over the world was the most valuable experience of my life. My college has a goal of making every classroom a Great Commission classroom, meaning that every subject and topic that we study can be used for the expansion of the Gospel. I got to put that into practice to build relationships! I always thought that as an English major that wants to teach ESL that my ministry could only be living as an example of Christ and then get involved in a local church. Yet, I learned that I could be intentional with my students, get to know them and what they like and don’t like and what they do for fun. Through building a genuine relationship, I can find bridges for the Gospel.
What about your ministry? What will this look like for you? I want to give some advice for those of you striving to do this. First, it is okay to be uncomfortable. Some of the best conversations that you may ever have might start off awkward and shaky. But don’t let that stop you from speaking up. You don’t have to start the conversation with the Gospel despite what speakers and evangelists may say. Talk about life and talk about interests. Don’t settle for casual, “how’s the weather” kinds of conversations, though. Be real with the people you talk to. Second, pray over your communications. Pray before these conversations and remember them and pray over them afterward. Don’t neglect the power of prayer when reaching your community. Third, be intentional. One conversation may not lead to a Gospel conversation, and that is okay! Keep in touch with that person, invite them into your home and continue to meet up with them. Showing you care enough to stay in contact can mean the world to a person. Lastly, remember that it is not your job to save people, but rather it is God’s. God is the only one who can save, so don’t worry so much over saying the right things or getting all the correct answers. Trust in God and his faithfulness.
Thinking back in London again, I was able to make some of these relationships. Particularly a girl around my age who was in University to be a video game designer. We were able to talk video games, music, YouTube, and other introductory subjects, but were also able to talk about life, dreams, and even church. Despite the time difference, we’ve been able to keep up through Instagram. She is not a believer, but she has a knowledge of God. It has been encouraging for me to talk to her simply and I pray that it is for her as well. She wants community and someone to talk to. Thanks to the work of the IMB missionaries in London, she has been able to find that. Don’t be afraid to reach out and build relationships. Don’t let opportunities pass you by. Pray for boldness and wisdom. I will be as well and maybe even just one person can be reached through these efforts, and that one person would be enough.
Tomorrow my book, Ministry Win, releases on Amazon and on our website. I wanted to use today’s blog to share how churches can be impacted by Ministry Win. I have been serving in Youth Ministry since 2003, but around 2014 I began to study more in-depth how Student Ministries in America function. Why? Because I felt like at that moment that the Student Ministry in America was created to be more than just numbers and programs.
Sometimes we look at Student Ministry from a perspective of competition. Sadly, I think that some Student Pastors see their ministry through the lens of competing with other ministries in their area. Our ministry in a local church was never to compete or even model another church. Our ministries where we serve exists to reach, disciple, and grow students.
I wrote Ministry Win because I wanted to help my ministry where I was serving grow spiritually. I was tired of going from event to event. I wanted to have a purpose for doing Student Ministry daily. When you open the book and work through the pages, you will see how your ministry can win and have a strong foundation for growth.
Yes, I wanted numerical growth, but for me to see exponential growth, I wanted our ministry to have a foundation for visitors to walk into weekly. I am going to take it that if you are reading my blog, you must like to learn a little bit. Well in my research I read many different books, but there was a constant theme kept occurring, we must be building a foundation in students while in our ministry.
I know it seems simple, students will stick with their Christian faith after graduation if we help them build a strong foundation in our ministries. But let me ask you this, how are you making a foundation within your students?
We must have a game plan and a strategy for doing ministry. I know that each one of us who are pastors we do not preach to our congregation or students unprepared. Instead, each of us put in hours a week preparing and writing our messages. Well, the same thing needs to happen with how we do ministry.
Ministry Win was written because I wanted to help Youth Ministries in America win in ministry and find their purpose. I did not write this book to be another one of those books to model your ministry after, but instead, I wrote it as a book/workbook to help you create a winning strategy for ministry.