Starting a youth ministry seems like a herculean task to many, especially since young people have diverse needs and challenges as well as many expectations. So, how do you surmount the hurdles on the way and build a strong youth ministry? Below are tips you can borrow to make the process easier:
The Youth Ministry Should Have a Mission
In his book called ‘Courageous Leadership,’ Bill Hybels says that vision is a ‘picture of the future which produces passion.’ In other words, a vision isn’t merely a good idea, but a ‘thing’ that has the power to draw the attention of a group or flock and spur them to action. Likewise, a youth ministry should transcend the need for more youth in church and labor towards pointing young people towards their savior, Jesus Christ. This task is vital and urgent; and as the pioneer of the ministry, you need to excite the young people’s hearts and make them enthusiastic about serving in their Lord’s vineyard. Here is some help creating that mission.
A congregation without young people in its midst won’t seriously think about young people. They may grow apathetic to the needs of young people even as they soldier on with their services. A youth minister or a person concerned with the welfare of young people can turn this congregation’s attention to the young people in the community. There is a vast number of young people who could fill up the church pews if they were properly ministered to. So, go on and raise the issue with the church members and let them think about it. Ask the congregation to pray for the young people, and use church bulletins and newsletters to highlight news related to young people. As the issue dwells in their hearts, it will soon become a priority and the congregation will seriously consider taking matters of young people serious.
There is need of a strategy
With prayer and meditation, together with other church members, think about a workable strategy to enlist more youth under the banner of Christ. But always remember that a strong youth ministry will not form overnight, and it is wise to avoid the snare of becoming too excited with the vision of a vibrant youth ministry that you start expecting a quantum leap forward. Developing a strong youth ministry takes much time, effort, dedication, strategy and, above all, prayer. I Thessalonians 2 reveals what Paul’s strategy was in preaching the gospel: he first built relationships, proclaimed the gospel and taught scripture.
With enough support from the church leadership, the youth ministry will soon gain traction and the church pews will fill with young people hungering for God’s Word and pertinent instruction.