What a great way to start 2012 by attending the National Conference on Youth Ministry! A week with my wonderful wife, great information and encouragement from fellow youth workers—priceless! As promised, I would like to suggest a few New Year’s Resolutions student minister’s may want to add to their own 2012 list (no worries, there are only 3).
- Live life for the people who are going to be around your bed when you die. I know, it sounds morbid, but it works. As ministers, there are a lot of people who need a lot from us. This pressure rarely, if ever, takes a hiatus—it comes with the territory. As a result, we have to be intentional about our schedules and protect and spend time with those who are most deserving of our first fruits (i.e. God, Spouse, family, etc). You will run into people this year who believe their “needs” and “attention” is of first priority (at times it is—I am not talking about that) and emotional strain will occur when you say “No” or “Not now” to their time demands. I also realize that Divine Interruptions are part of a minister’s life—these moments are often the most rewarding. So, let this statement guide your time management. You will find yourself more refreshed and ready for ministry and your spouse and kids will thank you.
- Ask yourself the question, “How can I build authentic relationships with this program?” when planning your student ministry calendar. This simple question added to your planning will expand your ministry in the coming year. A good program provides opportunity for relationship building with the Lord, between student, between adults, between students and adults, between the “saved” and the “lost.” I know, there are many similar questions you should ask when developing your student ministry program (btw: keep a watch out for Duff Robbins book on programming due out this year—he will provide a lot of good questions). Even so, this one question will help your calendar become more sticky (www.stickyfaith.org).
- Read the Bible. I know…sounds ridiculous. I am going to assume that we all want to spend time in God’s word. However, I am finding more and more student minister’s who can discuss and quote authors of books, videos and blogs more than the bible. I hope you read books, watch videos and read blogs (thanks for reading this one) but be sure to get a steady diet of God’s opinion on things. Oh, the words of the bible are the only words promised to bless your students—guaranteed.
Question: What resolution(s) would you suggest student ministers add to their 2012 list?