ministry minutes...

In youth ministry today there are a lot of blogs, books, DVD series, curriculum and t-shirts that explain the next great thing. As a youth minister myself, I often find myself clinging to a lot of the ideas of the big wigs of youth ministry to help form my own opinion about youth ministry. A friend of mine told me a quote by John Welsey today that says, "Every seven years I am burning my old sermons. I should not be doing what I am doing if I can not continually change and be creative."

I look at a lot of different types of curriculum to find an idea or to really just outline for myself. How many of us have really even claimed some of the things that Doug Fields or other youth pastors have written, and said that we actually thought of it first? Youth ministers have sort of become lazy. I am just as guilty as the next person.

When trying to be creative or write your own curriculum, here are some ideas I have about helping the creative process:
1. Ask for help! We should not be too proud to ask for ideas of subjects the students want to talk about. If you have great relationships with your students, they will be pretty honest with you about subject matter they would like to hear about and discuss.
2. Try to be creative. We do not have to reinvent the wheel to keep students attention. We can dive right into the Bible and really grow our students. However, heed the warning that we don't want groups that can be a mile wide and an inch deep or vice-versa. We need to have enough disciplining to help our students want to crave more of the word.
3. Try to be original. It is great to use curriculum that has already been made and really mold it into our own to fit the group we have, but we should try to be a little more original than that. We can try to fit our own style into the students lives and into our youth groups.

Before I ever give a talk I ask myself these questions and I am thinking maybe they can help those who read this blog as well.
1. Is this REALLY what God has put on my heart to lead this week?
2. Have I gotten lazy with my work?
3. Is this going to mean more to me than the students?
4. Have I prepared enough for this lesson to answer questions after or during?

I hope this helps those who are serving in youth ministry. Whether it is volunteer or paid, keep doing a work that can often be underrated and unappreciated. However, remember we are there to help students grow closer with Christ and help equipping them to be disciples in the world outside the youth room walls.

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