The Role of Youth in Today's Church Teaching the youth of the church to grow in their relationship with the Lord prepares them to serve Christ in everything they do. As a result, this nourishes the congregation and allows the church to thrive. By joining a youth ministry, leaders and mentors work together to build discipleship. Through participation in worship, reading and studying the Bible, and outside of missionary work, young people will develop a sense of pride.
Knowing God and committing to service will inevitably bear good fruit. The mentor-friend role requires a balance that you must intentionally establish from day one. The first thirty days are essential to establish that you are a true follower of Jesus and that you are a true follower of Jesus who has something to share. Take a trip with your youth group during that first month.
Travel and other shared experiences provide great opportunities to meet your students, demonstrate their authenticity, create teaching moments and generate enthusiasm for your group. Another way many youth workers increase face-to-face time with their young people is by occasionally having lunch with them in their schools. Most importantly, remember that every interaction with your youth is a gift from God, which we honor by intentionally seeking to be a mentor-friend. As we teach, we must realize that it is impossible to teach our young people the right answer to every question or the right way to act in every situation.
However, in addition to teaching our young people to memorize important truths, we can and should teach them theological and practical thinking skills. This skill set will equip them to process each situation in light of their Christian faith and navigate the world as followers of Jesus. For example, instead of starting the lesson by saying, “Don't smoke marijuana, you could lead a discussion in which you ask young people to evaluate marijuana by asking, “What does the Word of God say? Is it legal? Is it beneficial? That's just one example. The point is that we must teach what God's Word says and how it influences our decision-making when the topic is not clearly stated in Scripture.
This requires that you know the Word of God yourself, which is one of the reasons why the first role (being a follower of Jesus) is going to be the basis of your ministry. It also requires learning the art of asking open-ended questions and waiting long enough for students to process their question and respond. The first few discussions will definitely be a little shaky. You will have to teach young people to dialogue with respect.
This includes teaching listening skills, staggering on tangents, dealing with the dominators of conversation as smoothly as possible, and, of course, correcting with the Word of God as needed. Another way that young people will learn to put their faith into action is by seeing it shaped by the way you live your own faith. For example, they will be on the lookout to see if you stop to pray, if you give of yourself to serve others, or if you participate in a small group. They'll want to know how you've handled the difficult problems of faith and life.
Be appropriately open about your struggles, understand how others have faced your challenges, and be courageous to share how your faith has led you to live differently. This will go a long way in establishing you as a reliable spiritual leader. Student ministries across the country have the opportunity to partner with the church and families to bring teens to Jesus. The role of young people is to practice vulnerability by sharing the disorientation that one feels when one of their parents abandons them at home.
I've been serving teens as a volunteer and as a staff member of different churches for 15 years, and I still need to be reminded why youth ministry is important. If you want to change your youth, you always need to lead by example and get involved with your community and your people. I recently had the opportunity to attend the National Youth Workers Convention, where Director of Youth Specialties Mark Matlock identified five things he believes Youth Ministry is doing for the Church today. Consider creating a youth leadership team, which provides opportunities for your young people to develop a team mindset, give feedback, and participate in planning youth groups or other events.
This youth group also provides opportunities for young people to gain leadership skills, as they assist in planning and executing programming through the position of youth moderators and the role of the youth board. Youth workers should work collaboratively with parents; and parents should not expect the youth worker to do his work for them. By teaching young people what is required as a believer in Christ and instilling the importance of justice, you prepare them for the world. No one wants to be the guardian of boundaries, but it is an important part of the responsibilities of a youth worker.
Anyone interested in starting or joining a youth group should understand that commitment and coherence are the keys to success. . .