Youth Ministry Committee? What is that? Recently, I’ve discovered that not every denomination uses the word “committee” in their vocabulary. In fact they don’t even use anything that resembles a committees period!
If you do not have a Youth Ministry Committee working by your side you need to form one – NOW! The Youth Ministry Committee is an important spoke in your wheel of Youth Ministry. They are a group of adults who work as a team alongside the Youth Minister. Together they plan and minister to kids through a variety of events and activities. It is by working together they can combine their strengths and make the greatest impact in kids lives! These adults need to be people who love God and love kids!!
The 3 Essential P’s needed for a strong Youth Ministry Committee:
The Youth Ministry Committee must do three things in order for everyone to thrive: pray, plan, and play. As the leader of the team you need to help the group to understand that ultimately their goal is to minister to kids, their friends, and new visiting kids by building relationships with them. With these three things in the forefront of their mind, the Youth Ministry Committee will maximize their influence in the kids lives.
Prayer – Prayer needs to be number one focus for the Youth Ministry Committee! Praying for the kids daily lives and spiritual growth, for opportunities for them to connect with individuals, patience when required, and for direction as we interact with the youth.
Planning – Planning out events together gives the team a chance to take ownership. Having said that, it is important to remember that they are still looking to you to lead them. For example, a meeting is most efficient and effective if you have already done some preliminary brainstorming, investigating and laying out some rough drafts of plans to present to the committee. Starting from scratch with the committee would overwhelm them and really bog down the process. Present your ideas with an open mind set. This allows room for input and different twists on the same event. Also, planning out a year in advance is important. This allows you a chance to reserve camp sites, or fundraise for a big summer trip. It also gives you and your team the time needed to be creative and add their own fun twists to an event. (Give brand new ideas extra time to catch fire and inspire your team. Allow the group time to mull on the new idea so they can wrap their heads around it. Sometimes, you need to put it on a shelf and present it again later. It’s possible it will be accepted in the future when they are more equipped for the experience.)
Playing – Playing together helps the team get to know each other and bring joy to the play they will experience with kids. Play is the key to getting inside the boundaries kids have built up around themselves to stay “safe”. If they see you are willing to care about them, in spite of their walls, you may be able to play your way into their trust. If so, then introducing them to personal relationship with Jesus becomes a real possibility!
What are some tips you might add to having a strong Youth Ministry committee (team)?
Please add to the conversation. We’ll be glad you did. Be kind and share this with someone who could use these tools.
As discussed in our blog, Holy Spoke, the importance of having strong spokes inside your wheel is key to keeping things rolling! This is one of those important spokes.
It’s really necessary one way or another to make sure you are involved with a peer group of fellow youth pastors. If one doesn’t exist in your town, create one yourself and host it at your church location! Meeting monthly with other people who do the same job you do is important, helpful, and at times may become really necessary for your personal sanity. Your ministry is a very specialized area of employment with it’s own unique challenges. Talking with people who understand your world and your daily experience can be very helpful.
During the first few years of my 7 year career in Youth Ministry my husband worked part-time at a bicycle shop nearby. This gave him the freedom to help me out with overnight youth events and such. The shop experience gave us a chance to minister to some teens outside of our youth group which was pretty neat. It was also a fun topic for Joel to “bond” with the guys in the youth group. The highlight for me was having Joel and I ride our tandem bicycle down the center aisle to the front of the church during worship so I could do a special youth sermon. It was a hoot!
I still find it amazing how 2 skinny bicycle tires can hold up to a few hundred pounds and transport all that weight from A to B! However, there are times when even the tires can’t help but become shaped like a taco! Back in those days Joel saw many a sad squished bike wheel in the shop. One major part of a bike wheels strength is the multiple thin spokes crisscrossing from one side to the other. If it weren’t for those spokes the circle would squish! But working together those skinny little pieces of metal can hold a whole lot of weight.
And The Point Is?
We are each a lot like that bike tire. We need structure and support to keep us strong or else we can get taco-d too, by angry parents, grumpy teens, unsupportive congregational members, uninvolved pastors, etc. When doing youth ministry we need the support of others who understand what we do, how hard we work, a listening ear, words of advice, and a whole lot of prayer!
4 Tools 4 Youth Ministry
Our company, Prepare For Rain, is all about being supportive spokes to hard working folks! We want to help you chase your passions and impact this world in a holy way. We hope our words of support will help you:
Set healthy boundaries for yourself both at church and home
Encouragement for the tough days
Experience an at-a-girl or at-a-boy for those good days!
Discover tools for your Youth Ministry Tool Kit!
We hope to be one of your “holy spokes” of support!! If you have a topic you’d like us to address send me an a message at the bottom of this page. We will do our best to answer your questions or find someone else who can!
Learn more about an amazing power tool made just for YMs like you (by clicking here)!!
A few years ago I was asked for an Artist Statement to go with artwork I was submitting for an exhibit. Being a musician I never thought displaying a piece of art would be something I’d ever do. I realized putting my personal story down on paper, along with my 2 framed CDs I recorded, would count as a piece of visual art. I had to give it a shot! The theme was “Second Chances”…a perfect match for my story.
Here is what I wrote:
Artist Statement: “Second Chances”
Music has always been my passion, my language. It is how I most comfortably communicate that which is nearest and dearest to my heart. My guitar has always been my partner in this process. Having lost the ability to play for 5 years I struggled with things I’d never imagined: constant pain, depression, great loss. God showed me mercy by introducing me to myself. I discovered I was skilled at songwriting! God knew I needed my guitar out of the picture so I wouldn’t be distracted by it. He then showed me amazing grace by providing me a “Second Chance”. I can play again! Now I write, play and sing!! So, I rejoice and am glad in it!
I encourage you to spend time figuring out what your story is! It matters! When you do I encourage you to write it down. Of course there will be more to write as each day passes but write it down, at least up to this point. You just might find some insights into what God has been doing in your life. Looking back will also cause you to slow down, reflect, and see all the blessings He has already given you. Who knows it might give you some hints into what He might be up to in the future.
However, it might leave you with a lot more questions. Hang on though! You’ll get another piece to your life’s puzzle. Who knows, you just may start to see how your stories become interconnected, one leading into another. Hmmm…it’s almost like someone is orchestrating your life.
One of the best things I have discovered from getting to know my own story is that it is the KEY to being able to naturally and more comfortably share God’s love with other people. God is in our everyday stuff. He is truly the co-author of our story. He has given us the freedom to make our own choices but you can know He is still weaving Himself into our lives in ways we don’t realize. If we look hard enough though, we can sometimes see His handy work.
If you were to write an artist statement for your life what would it be? In other words, what’s your story…so far?
Maybe there’s a new story in your life you still want to “write”. What would that look like?
Please share and add to the conversation. We would love to learn your story!
Humor? Struggling with ADHD can be very serious business. For a period of time I believed that I had ADHD. However, years later I discovered that instead I have Celiac Disease. It turns out that undiscovered Celiac Disease can, due to the lack of nutrition, give you the symptoms of ADHD. Now that I am eating correctly and absorbing the nutrients I need again, my symptoms have subsided.
Boy it was tough before I found out though. I thought I was losing my mind! Misplacing multiple things a day, losing track of time, fighting off feelings of depression, and anxiety attacks. All these things made it very difficult for me to just function. I became an impatient mom and a very reactive wife. Life was difficult and serious.
Thank goodness I had help discovering that humor and laughing can help the situation.
On my 2nd CD I wrote a couple songs of humor about ADHD. I did so not to make fun of it, because it’s not funny, but to use humor as a survival tool. When I discovered these songs helped me smile, I realized that they could help others too!
These songs were written to help people with ADHD or those people who live with someone who has it. Help? How in the world could a song help? Well, humor is a great coping mechanism. Life can start feeling pretty darn serious when you misplace important documents, or your car keys, when time is of the essence. Anxiety starts to build and you begin to question yourself, your intelligence, and your trustworthiness. That is not a good feeling. The more you start to doubt yourself the more distracted you become which causes you to actually misplace even more things. It just becomes a downward spiral!
I wrote these songs to help you and me take a deep breath, shake it off, and pull ourselves off the floor of frustration. Humor can do that, and who doesn’t want some humor?
Now whether you have ADHD or any other chronic health issues that takes its toll and makes daily life a bit challenging, a good laugh can positively impact your day. Chemicals in your brain release serotonin when we laugh. In addition to feeling better, serotonin helps you think clearer. When we relax we can remember things we couldn’t or problem solve something we thought was impossible. We can become patient and persistent longer.
When we get upset it actually hinders our ability to think logically and instead we react which often makes the situation we are in worse. So stop, take a step away from the situation, listen to a silly tune and then try again.
Humor, Meet Life
I use the songs to help me stay lighthearted when I am feeling a bit overwhelmed with life. Otherwise I just can easily get depressed. Going down the path of depression is no laughing matter and you want to nip it in the bud ASAP. Depression blinds us from all that is good about ourselves. We end up feeling small, insecure, and out of control. Sometimes it can come out in forms of anger that attack or are passive aggressive. Other times it can come out as neglect towards those you love most.
Reach for the light, the light of humor and you can become a light for others!
Be gracious with yourself and those you love through laughter!