Getting Started in One-to-One Discipleship

So you are sold on the idea of getting your leaders to meet with students one to one but like a lot of things in youth work getting started is the hardest part. Where do you begin? Some teens, in one of the groups mentioned in a previous blog, may come to you to ask for extra help. Other times parents may ask for extra help with their teen. What has worked for me was to announce the program of one to one meetings and I have had kids approach me afterward explaining that they would like extra help in their spiritual development. You could also encourage your small group leaders or adult leaders to take a student under their wing for a season… The relationship is established… but what happens after that?

How to Talk to Your Teenagers About Sex

So your students are surrounded by sex all the time.  It is hard to watch a movie, surf the internet, or pick up a novel without some message about sex being shared.  Some of these messages are healthy, but let’s be honest many are not.  Unfortunately the church has been very poor at being a strong voice in teaching our students about sex.

So the simple question is what are you doing to help your students have a biblical view of their sexuality.

3 Choices to Avoid Crisis

Don’t you hate it when you find yourself running from one crisis to another?

Suddenly everything you planned goes out the window and you are forced to drop everything to run to the passport office, get your car fixed, hold an emergency meeting, dash to the FedEx depot, or fly out to a store.

When I am in the midst of a crisis, my heart races, temperature rises, my patience is as short as my shallow breaths and I begin to hate my life. Panic can set in along with these last minute problems that jump me when I am least prepared.

Because I hate crises so much, I have determined to avoid them like the plague by making and sticking to these three proactive choices.

How To Bring Control To A Chaotic Situation

Nothing good comes from chaos…

As I said in my last blog there was a season when we saw many new students come to the youth ministry.  The immediate reaction was “Great!”  Don’t get me wrong, it was great but it was also extremely chaotic.

Imagine walking around your youth ministry and instead of students praying or encouraging each other you hear F-bombs – also finding remnants of weed in the bathroom, and alcohol being sneaked in.  In short it was chaos.  This is not what I envisioned youth ministry to be like and I was not trained to deal with all of this.  As a result I learned these lessons through the school of hard knocks.

For whatever reason, if your youth ministry is chaotic how do you bring control without losing all of the students.  These three lessons were learned the hard way but I think they could benefit you.

One-on-One Discipleship

 You mean Coaching?

One of the big buzz words among church people these days is coaching. By “coaching” what is meant, is that you find a caring person who will challenge you to grow in areas of your life. There is an element of coaching involved as that person helps you to set goals then keeps you accountable to reaching those goals. At the Youth Ministry Institute, we take this so seriously that every student does One-on-Ones with a prof.

3 Shifts To See New Students Come To Your Youth Ministry

We all want to see students who don’t know Jesus come to our ministry but let’s be honest, it doesn’t happen that often.

Why is that? I am sure we are working hard and trying our best to pour into the students we have and to reach out to those who don’t know Jesus yet.  We might see a few new students show up but never what we were hoping for.

There was a season that I was working as hard as I have ever worked but we never saw new students.  Then there were three shifts that took place and everything changed.  Our youth ministry started to have students show up in droves that didn’t know Jesus, that didn’t know church culture (hello F-bombs, alcohol and drugs) and were from different religions.

Exciting New Resource – BEFORE YOU SAY GOODBYE

BYSG1

  • Only 1 in 3 people who attended church as a child still do so as young adults.
  • 1 in 2 young adults continue to identify with the Christian tradition they were raised in.
  • 3 out of 5 young adults who stop attending church will also drop their affiliation with any Christian tradition.

These are just a few of the facts from the Hemorrhaging Faith Survey. They are quite disturbing and depressing when we realize these are not just numbers. These statistics represent the people we work with and are investing in. These numbers can also raise lots of questions, finger pointing, and blame. However, in the end most people come to the place, ‘So now what? or ‘What should our response be?

Create a Compelling Vision

He sat at his clean desk on his first day at the church. A white sheet stared up at him from the desk, like the eye of a Cyclops. “Now what am I supposed to do?” he thought in a George-Costanza-ish moment. “I have all this training, done hundreds of hours of volunteer work. But now I am overwhelmed with the enormity of the task.” Mental paralysis sets in. Where do I start?

There are so many variables. So much to consider when giving direction to a youth ministry but something needs to be done.  It is one thing to have a general philosophy of youth ministry and quite another to implement it. Having a clear vision makes all the difference. Here are some steps for developing and inspiring vision.