Monday, 10 November 2008

Top Ten Tips for Youth Leaders

Tip 3: Don’t be a Lone Ranger

“Who was that masked man?” “Why, he’s the Lone Ranger?”

There are many different roles that need fulfilled to ensure an effective youth ministry. Everything from Bible teacher to toast maker; leader of fun games to taxi driver; prayer co-ordinator to administration expert; encourager/pastor to manager.

But just because there are many different roles doesn’t mean that you have to do these all yourself.

Yet most of us come from churches that promote a “Lone Ranger mentality” where the minister, youth worker or small group of people do all the practical work, ministry and everything in-between. Many congregations will have an attitude that because they “employ” or “elect” someone to a role, then they can sit on their backside & admire (or more commonly critique) from the stands. Also, some ego-driven or controlling individuals don’t like to empower others to help in ministry.

Don’t buy into this myth. Being a Lone Ranger will only lead to frustration, loss of passion, burn out and spiritual starvation. Been there, bought the T-shirt. It’s not nice and it’s not God’s intention.

Build up a team of people passionate about Jesus & passionate about introducing teenagers to Him… then use your team’s weird & wonderful personalities, skills and abilities to work together for the Kingdom.

Some vital words for your vocabulary are “Team”, “Delegation” and “Sorry I can’t do that, but _____ might be able to help you/”

If Paul Halliwell needed a Tonto; if Jesus sent His disciples out in teams; and if Paul gives us detailed instructions on working as a body (1 Corinthians 12) then you’d be wise to heed their example.

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