youth ministry, youth worker, readiness for change

Readiness to Change Factors

By Doug Franklin February 8, 2012

We all want students to grow, so much so that we program all kinds of activities to help them grow spiritually. Small groups, Bible studies, retreats and mission trips are all designed to move students forward in their walk with God. So what do you do when students do all these activities and don’t grow? Why are they not changing, after all our programing was top-of-the-line and our small group leaders really care.  Maybe the problem is your students may not want to change. All the programing in the world can’t reach a student who doesn’t want to be reached. As youth workers we need to focus on the readiness to change factors in students’ lives. These factors are attitude, awareness and accountability. When we ask ourselves where are our students are with these factors we begin to think beyond programing and a one-size-fits-all youth ministry approach. By asking students the following questions we can begin to understand their readiness to change:

Attitude – Ask:

1. What happens when we have a poor attitude toward our relationship with God?

2. What does it mean to you to be “made new”?

Awareness – Ask:

1. What can happen when we are not aware of our own shortcomings?

Accountability – Ask:

1. What 2 -3 people do you know who seem to be positive role models for spiritual growth?

2. When was a time you had a successful experience with accountability?

3. What are the benefits of accountability?

When you know the students’ readiness to change factors we can focus on the issues that will lead to change.

About the Author

Doug Franklin

Doug Franklin is the president of LeaderTreks, an innovative leadership development organization focusing on students and youth workers. Doug and his wife, Angie, live in West Chicago, Illinois. They don’t have any kids, but they have 2 dogs that think they are children. Diesel and Penelope are Weimaraners  who never leave their side. Doug grew up in…  Read More