Hi! I am praying for you right now!
Here are 2 video links I think you might like to see:
Good To Great
“Good is the enemy of great.”
That’s the opening sentence from Jim Collins’s best-selling book on corporate management, Good To Great. He writes:
“Good is the enemy of great. And that is one of the key reasons why we have so little that becomes great. We don’t have great schools, principally because we have good schools. We don’t have great government, principally because we have good government. Few people attain great lives, in large part because it is just so easy to settle for a good life.”
What does a book on corporate management have to do with our Christian faith?
I’m persuaded that Christians settle for “the good life” when God is calling us to something great.
I don’t know about you, but more times than I would like to admit, I have found myself settling for a “good Christian life” while caring for little else in the Kingdom of God that does not directly relate to me.
Even though we attempt to stay inside of God’s boundaries, we manufacture a life where self is at the center.
We are thankful for our good marriage that we have because of Jesus. And we should be! How amazing is it that two selfish people can live in harmony with one another?
We are thankful for our good family that we have by grace. We are thankful for our good career that we have by God’s sovereignty. We are thankful for our good Christian friends who surround us.
Yes, we should celebrate and enjoy these good blessings that are ours!
But, in ways that we don’t even realize, it’s quite possible for our Christianity to culminate here.
That’s settling for good, when great has been offered.
You see, we have been chosen to transcend the boundaries of our own little plans and purposes, wants and needs. We have been called to participate in the Kingdom of God and his mission to make all things new (Revelation 21:5).
That doesn’t mean you need to abandon the good things that God has blessed you with.
Rather, it means living with a redemptive, ministry mentality in every those situations, locations, and relationships where God has placed you.
What does that look like? Here are a few examples:
- Don’t just settle for a good marriage. How can God use you in the redemption of other marriages, or engaged couples, or divorcees, or singles?
- Don’t just settle for a good family. How can God use you to disciple others in the wider family of Christ?
- Don’t just settle for good career. How can God use your platform, power and influence to make a difference for his name?
- Don’t just settle for good Christian friends. How can God use you in your neighborhood to spread the life-changing Good News of the Gospel?
Be honest with yourself and with God today: Are there ways in which you have settled for, and Christian-ized, selfish living?
Jesus rescued you from something very bad, not so you could settle for a good life, but to invite you to something eternally great!
40 YOUTH MINISTRY HACKS
- Keep a small stack of $5 Starbucks gift cards handy in your desk drawer to give out for encouragement.
- Join the Youth Ministry groups on FB & get wisdom, advice, how to’s from 1000’s other youth pastors. (Download Youth Ministry, Stuff You Can Use)
- Students attract students. Let them promote, teach, lead ministries, and host.
- Students know what they like better than youth pastors know. Give students input into your youth group’s physical environment.
- When making a decision don’t ask “Will my students like this?” ask “Will my students’ parents like this?”.
- Find and cling to a network of other youth pastors in your area. Youth Ministry is too hard to do alone.
- Always remember, students are a work in progress. When they mess up, it’s ok. You did too.
- Use DYM University to train your leader. It’s hard to have an above average youth ministry with only average volunteers.
- When with other youth pastors ask more questions about their ministry than you make statements about yours.
- Give your custodians a gift card and thank you after a messy night.
- Partner with other youth ministry para-church organizations. They are reaching students you can’t/aren’t.
- Get a good travel rewards credit card. Pay for your ministry supplies and trips on it. Then, take a vacation with all the points.
- Read something every day. If you’re not learning, you’re not leading.
- Buy a cheap drone for camp/retreat. Use it as a way to provide surveillance to cover the campground quickly.
- Do background checks for all your volunteers every year. It protects you, your students, and gives confidence to parents. Back Check is an online provider that works with most churches insurance providers.
- Realize you’re doing the most important and urgent job in the world. Act like it. Don’t waste time on things that don’t matter.
- Fully screen all the videos you ever play at youth group. Watch them through an over-protective parents lens.
- Use an app like Schedule Once, Doodle, or Calendy to make appts with leaders and parents. You set the times you’re available throughout the week, they choose the times.
- Schedule one day every month for yourself. No meetings, no prep work. Use it to pray, read, reflect.
- Email parents every week. Tell them what happened last week and what is happening in the coming weeks.
- Use plastic cups, not styrofoam cups, when working w/ youth – they aren’t as fun to pick apart & leave the pieces all over the room.
- Align your youth ministry vision with the church’s vision. You are on the same team.
- Pray for your senior pastor every day.
- Just because you don’t like lock-ins doesn’t mean students don’t. You’re a youth pastor, don’t be a grinch.
- Post on social media while you’re going to the bathroom. It’s a sure fire way to make sure you are constantly posting on social media. No one will know.
- Buy a deep fryer. You can cook mozza sticks and chicken fingers in 2 minutes!
- Get a membership to Download Youth Ministry. You have more important things to do than reinventing the wheel each week.
- Rig games. There are certain students who really need a win.
- Convince your church to adopt certain tech (Wufoo, Dropbox, Mailchimp, Planning Centre, Buffer, EZ texting…etc) and then use it for youth ministry. That way you get the tech but it doesn’t come off your budget.
- Sometimes your church can’t give you a raise, but they can give you more holidays. Ask for that.
- Put your phone on “do not disturb” for a couple hours every day. You’ll get more done in those two hours than you will the rest of the day.
- Don’t run expensive events very often. Keep events over $20 to 5-6 times/year.
- Use Planning Centre Registrations for big events/retreats/camps. It so simple and cheap.
- Don’t be afraid to take up tithes/offerings at youth group. You might be a lead pastor one day and those teens will be the giving adults in your congregation.
- It’s ok to cancel youth group sometimes, especially if it benefits parents.
- Realize your youth ministry isn’t as fragile as you’re making it out to be.
- Use a program cheat sheet (like this) to make sure you never drop the ball.
- Don’t spend much time on merchandise…it almost never works the way you hope it would.
- Give your lead pastor the benefit of the doubt.
- Use “Do Not Disturb” on your phone from 9:00pm-8:00am every night/morning