Recently, I went to lunch with a couple of student pastors (Josh Harvey- Grace Baptist Temple and Jordan Ledwell-First Baptist Church of Welcome). We discussed many things, but I did ask them what was one thing they are struggling with in student ministry. We all came up with the same conclusion, and that was getting students to serve and get involved. It just so happens that this morning during my quiet time, we dealt with the importance of serving. Now, this post is similar to yesterday’s post about Developing Student Leaders. We live in a “Please Me” generation. I have noticed that students come expecting to be pleased and entertained, and leave directly when they are done. They are not their to help or to serve. They want to be served. So, we are trying to change this issue.
1. Implement student leaders. If you do not have a student leadership team, you need one. Go ahead and institute it quickly. I do not care if there are 2 students on the team or 25 students on the team. It is important, because you can give them responsibility and teach them to serve.
2. Teach on serving. The students need to hear lessons on serving, and how life is not all about them.
3. Give them areas where each of them can serve. Sometimes students are not serving because we have given them nothing to do. Our student leadership team involves only juniors and seniors. Well, a 9th grader came to me wanting to serve. I found out his gift is video and technology. I have him making an intro video for our student ministry each week to play on the screen. You have to give them ways to serve.
4. Exemplify this for them. You cannot blame the students for not serving if they do not see their student pastor serving as well. We must set the example. We need to be cleaning up after youth group. We need to be moving tables or picking up trash if we expect them too.
5. Pray for God to change the trend. I honestly believe students are more reachable today. They are wanting to be involved and serve. Many times, we just do not give them areas to serve, or we do not give them any freedom to make the area of service their own. I believe everything must be bathed in prayer. This is certainly something to pray over. Pray that God would change their hearts and give them a servant’s heart. We all need a servant’s heart.