As we approach the new year, we begin to hear a lot about new year’s resolutions. Now, on a side note, I am not a big fan of new year’s resolutions. I find that this is the only time that we hear about them. I feel that we seldom hear about them again, and we continue to struggle at following through with what we commit to. I began to think about ministry and specifically student ministry. What can youth pastors commit to for this year that we can actually follow through on? Here are a few resolutions to help you this new year:
Commit to making your faith your top priority… In ministry, we are concerned with everyone that we minister to and how their faith is active or inactive. This year, focus on your faith. Now, I am not saying disregard others, because that would be forsaking your job description as a youth pastor, but what happens all to often is that we focus more heavily on others and their faith while neglecting our personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I have learned that making your faith your priority will help you as you help others in their faith.
Commit to being patient with who you minister to… Look, we are passionate about student ministry. You would not be reading this if I did not believe you are passionate about your students, families, and leaders that you minister with. Instead of spending so much time and energy into complaining about what is not happening with the families, leaders and students you minister to, instead spend the same amount of time and energy into motivating and inspiring the ones that you minister with. In other words, be positive instead of negative about the people you minister with. It will make a world of difference.
Commit to family ministry…Over the last 5-10 years, family ministry has become the focal point of student ministry. We finally realized that student ministry is family ministry. Plan your calendar of events for the family. Target the entire family, and not just the students you minister to. Have activities and more for the entire family. Train and equip the parents to raise up a generation that loves and pursues Jesus Christ whole heartily.
Commit to relationships… Look I am tired of seeing so many student pastors fall out of the ministry. I feel that this could improve if student pastors committed to relationships. We need healthy relationships. You need relationships within the church, but you also need healthy relationships outside of the church. This is one of the several keys to longevity in student ministry. Have people to keep you accountable. Have friends to vent to, and look for guys to give you sound advice.
Commit to the Local Church… I am a firm believer in the local church. Find ways to connect your students and their families into the local church through serving. Make this part of your core strategy for accomplishing the vision God has called you to.
What resolution would you add to the list?