Make the Most of the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Are you ready for it…?

One of my favorite commercials is the Staples commercial the shows a Mom dancing through the aisles of Staples picking up school supplies while her children are walking behind her with dread on their faces.  All to the song “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.”

It’s hilarious watch it here! Click

This is marketing at its finest!  It’s hard to believe that September is here and not only is school starting, but youth ministries are also getting ready to kick off a new season.  I always loved this time of year; it’s a time of anticipation of what God is going to do in the lives of the students. As you look forward to the new season, what steps should you take?

 1. Saturate it with Prayer.

This seems so cliché, but it is a truth that cannot be stressed enough.  The goal of youth ministry is to see the lives of teens transformed by the power of Christ, everything that is done needs to be soaked in prayer.  Pray for the incoming students and their families, those who have graduated, your leaders, and for the Pastor and other staff members. Prayer also for yourself that God would guide you and give you insight into the upcoming year.

2. Invest into leaders. 

This is where the greatest return on your invest can come from.  Never try and do it yourself. Spend time developing, nurturing and empowering the leaders around you.

3. Define success. 

It’s important as you begin the new school year to have a clear vision for the youth ministry.  A clear vision will give the youth ministry purpose in what it strives to archive.  Having a clear vision and purpose will also help to clarify and define what success will look like.

4. Highlight key events.

There are always key events that are highpoints throughout the year in the life of a youth ministry.

5. Create opportunities to serve. 

Look for occasions to have the students serve within the church and in the community.  Serving is important because it models the life of Christ. Serving also is a fantastic way to develop a sense of community within the group. Having students serve together is an effective way to build a sense of commitment and connectedness in the youth ministry.

6. Whatever you do…Make it Special

This is like no other time of the year. It’s a fresh start, a new beginning, and sets the tone for the rest of the year. I hope that its a great one for you!!


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Matt is the Director of the Youth Ministry Institute at Vanguard College. He has over 20 years of student ministry experience all over the country. He has 3 kids. His 2 girls are in their teen years so he has lots of opportunity to put his student ministry years to good use at home everyday. He's completing a Masters in Adolescent and Family Counseling.