During my student ministry high school years, I was invited to grow in skill and heart. I didn’t think about it while it was happening, but other leaders were equipping me.
I was asked to play guitar and sing. I was given the reigns to lead a lesson or two when our ministry leader was away. I was invited to meet with a leadership team each Wednesday morning for breakfast before school.
Through the encouragement and equipping of loving leaders, I not only gained experience but also the confidence to keep going.
Youth workers are asked to accomplish so much – from connecting to students, to mentoring students, to recruiting of leaders, to planning, preparing and leading, as well as building bridges with and supporting families.
There are systems that can be put in place to help with each of these. But one simple focus is to think about equipping those around you.
Equip students, equip volunteer leaders and equip the church.
Equip with the vision
The vision is powerful. What is your vision for the ministry and for the lives of students? What are you trying to accomplish? Equipping people with this knowledge will help them stay focused, motivated and encouraged – both students and volunteers. This will also set the pace and direction of the ministry.
Equip with opportunity
There is no reason to do everything yourself. In my personal story, I was asked to lead the student ministry for our group of 50+ students a couple different times. None of those students probably remembered what I said or did. And I’m sure none of them remember the fact that the youth director wasn’t there. But I still remember being asked and count it among the seeds that propelled me into life long ministry roles. GIVE STUDENTS AND LEADERS OPPORTUNITIES. [44 Youth Workers Might Delegate]
Equip through invitations
What can you invite people to? Invite people to special events, regular events, and projects. But equip them other invitations too: invite them to learn and experience tithing, to pray aloud, to use their skills for other ministries in the church, to memorize scripture and to follow Jesus. Invitations are powerful and even the simplest ones can be life chagning.
Equip in ministry training
Take your leaders – student leader and adults – to training events. Host a simple training event among your group. Send links and listen to podcasts together. Give your circle opportunities to learn, families included. Don’t overwhelm them with links, but choose two or three a year to help them go deep. [One Online Video Training Resource You Can Check Out]
Pray for more people to equip.
The only prayer request Jesus made was for “more workers in the harvest field.” We need to pray for more people to equip. And when respond and show up, give God glory and jump in, inviting them to participate in leadership. [Read: Don’t Wait To Long]