The Heart of a Youth Leader
Being part of a church youth ministry is an exciting and energetic community to engage with: you’re constantly surrounded by a young generation who are passionate about Jesus, Krispy Kreme doughnuts, and unashamed dancing! Nevertheless, with the privilege that comes in leading youth, there is a strong sense of responsibility bestowed on the leaders of the upcoming generation to lead the youth of today on a God-lit path, filled with encouragement and love. In world where heartbreak, disappointments and insecurities have found a stronghold in young people’s lives, it’s our opportunity and responsibility, as both church leaders and youth leaders, to disciple the young people who come our way.
Whether you’ve been a pastor for years, or find yourself in the position of a newly-appointed youth leader, here are a few simple but important things to always remember:
Be An Encourager
It can be easy to see youth nights as a place to hang out with the younger generation and mess about for a couple of hours, but at the heart of any youth ministry should be the spirit of encouragement. Your youth may see you once or twice a week, but outside of youth nights they encounter very real situations and struggles, perhaps at school, college, or home situations. As youth leaders, we should be people who continuously speak life over our youth, encouraging them when they need it most and lifting them up when they accomplish great things. The best leaders always inspire others, so always be an encourager to help young people win in life!
When leading young people, especially those younger than you, you become an exemplary leader to those you minister to. Nevertheless, this does not mean you have to be perfect! Be honest about things that you’ve gone through and stay real when it comes to life’s ups and downs. When you are honest about the brokenness of human life, God’s grace reveals itself more powerfully to your youth than you could imagine.
All the hype about being a ‘cool’ youth ministry is insignificant when you’re not focused on discipling your youth. Being a leader has nothing to do with us, but all to do with God. He’s placed us in this ministry to help lead the upcoming generation to Jesus, and that doesn’t happen overnight. Be faithful with the lives that are in your hands and understand that we all go through a journey. Learn to have patience and a spirit of consistency with your youth, your church and your servanthood.
We wholeheartedly believe in empowering the next generation, and inspiring young leaders in their walk with God. Click here for more information on how ChurchWorks can manage your teams and community. To read more on church leadership, click here.