Teens had to be there. The activities were too long. I spoke with no point or direction. Our youth ministry program format was perfect for driving teens away. Something had to change.
Maybe it’s your first year in youth ministry and you’ve walked into a mess. Maybe you’ve been in the same place for a while and you’ve hit a rut.
You are disappointed by the attendance. Volunteers are hard to come by. Things need to change. If you are looking to create, tweak or change your youth ministry’s format be sure you:
With summer winding down do you feel like you have enough volunteers? The answer is probably, “No.” The truth is that it never feels like enough. I used to lose sleep as Labor Day approached. I would wonder, “Are we going to be okay?”
The truth is you will be okay, but that doesn’t change the fact that you still need to recruit volunteers. So, how do you make sure you have enough volunteers by the first gathering?
“How could they mess this up?” I had sent my volunteers the link for the game, but none of them came prepared. There I was bailing them out once again. Then it dawned on me, “I don’t think I told them to do anything more than check the link out.”
It is frustrating when it feels like your volunteers are just not getting it. You think about all the reasons why they aren’t meeting expectations, when the reality the reason could be you. Before you blame your volunteers for being incompetent, complacent or disloyal, ask yourself whether or not you have:
One of the things I enjoy the most about youth ministry is meeting with other youth workers. In fact with all the traveling I’ve done recently it’s been awesome to sit with other church workers. That’s why one of my favorite times of year is our church conference Matter 14.
Every year hundreds of church workers from across the country (and a few from overseas) gather in Timonium, Maryland at Church of the Nativity for Matter 14. Together we worship, learn and encourage one another to LOVE GOD. LOVE OTHERS. AND MAKE DISCIPLES. If you couldn’t join us last year you need to this year because:
I had five minutes to meet everyone at the beach with no clue how to get back. I had told people if I did not return after an hour to start considering looking for me.
It was my first time in Acadia National Park. I had been taken in by the scene a little too long. With no idea what path to take I finally found blue markers. I focused on the path and made my way back to family. In the end I was only five minutes late.
As leaders we are going to find ourselves out of our elements sometimes. My situation was not life and death; however, it did give me time to reflect on 3 leadership principles. Basically as a leader: