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The relationships we have in ministry will inspire, challenge, shape and even hurt us. Some of those relationships we think will last forever while others will just be a moment in time. One you might overlook, however, shouldn’t is the one you have with the children’s director. It’s easy to overlook it’s importance because most times we are competing for space, resources and ministers. It can be a tense relationship, one where it’s easy to believe that they get all of the attention, so instead of working with them you work against them.
Pouring into your children’s director can be one of the best moves you can make as a youth minister because it’s a long term investment that will pay off. A children’s ministry that does well is a ministry handing you kids on the right path and parents who are committed to you. And as great as a person your children’s director might be, you as the youth minister need to intentionally invest in them by:
- Learning Their Ministry: While you might not have the time to personally serve in the children’s ministry you will want to know the how, what, and why. The more you learn about them, the more you’ll understand how your ministry should respond. On top of benefitting your ministry it will show your children’s ministry that you care. When fellow staff members care about what you do it motivates; therefore, pass it on.
- Giving Them Teen Leaders: It’s paramount when an adult pours into a teen and the same could be said when a teen pours into a child. We are always looking to those older than us for wisdom and while a teenager might not have the same experience as a middle aged adult, they’ve got plenty to show a small child. By giving teens the opportunity to serve in kid’s ministry you give your future group of students role models worth following.
- Collaborating On Faith Growth: When it comes to creating a vision for the next generation you have your ideas and so does your children’s director. Who’s got the best idea? Who knows? However, if you don’t work together on the habits, and disciplines you want kids and teens to follow you are going to find that your ministries are more like silos than a church. You need to meet with your children’s director on a regular basis so that you can cast a vision that will take a small baby and grow them into a mature disciple of Christ.
It’s a relationship that has to work, because it’s one that is so connected to what you do as a youth minister. If your church is in the process of hiring one, try to get in on the interview process and if you are interviewing at a church make sure their children’s director is someone you can work with. Spend some time getting to know them, just as you would get to know a minister, invest in them and let them invest in you. When you work together you not only create a better ministry for teenagers, but for the entire family.
What are other things you work on with your children’s director?