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student ministry, youth worker, youth ministry

Thoughts from NYWC

By Doug Franklin November 20, 2012

Just returning from the Youth Specialties National Youth Workers Convention in Dallas. Lots of young youth ministry leaders at the convention. I am sure they are all little confused about what to do next. If you listen to all of these speakers you would feel overwhelmed with what needs to be done in ministry. Outreach, evangelism, adult volunteer training, discipleship, student leadership development, Bible study and how to minister to students in pain, abuse and extended adolescence. Oh don’t forget parent ministry and all the church management requirements. This job can seem impossible; so what do you do next? Here are a few thoughts:

1. Prioritize what is important to your church
Even though many great speakers talked passionately and Biblically about their favorite topic, it may not be right for your church. Your church has an DNA and a clear set of priorities. Continue to focus on them, even though you heard a great talk on some other topic.

2. What connects with you
God called you to this church and he has given you many passions, abilities and gifts. You are the right person for this church and he has you there for a reason, and I am guessing here but it would seem because he wants to use your passions, abilities and gifts. So what excites you should be a clue to what he wants to see happen. Follow your heart, not a great communicator’s heart.

3. Resist being a mimic
It’s easy to want to be like many of these great speakers you just heard or to think I am going to do this ministry just like ________ (fill in the blank). It won’t work. You are not them and they are not you. Be you, enjoy being you and don’t look to be someone else. If you try and become a mimic it will lead to frustration. Take what you heard and ask yourself, “how would I do something similar?” You need to lead for how you were wired.

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