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Who I amReside in St. Louis Missouri currently, Lived in California & Colorado.Husband.Father.Pastor.Football Enthusiast.Teacher.Learner.Dreamer.Reader.Friend. [thoughts & comments blogged here are my reflections living life trusting Jesus as God]

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Youth Ministry & Hockey

No not a post about a great game or even a fight breaking out during a youth night [although i have experience that one!].

Two nights ago i got 2 free tickets for a playoff hockey game. I took my son & had a great time with him. We saw a lot of action, a great fight and stayed up waaaaay past his normal bedtime. Now the great part was i saw the inter workings of a youth ministry teaching moment in action.

Hockey isn't known for high scoring games, but this was was a highlight reel film fest with 7 total goals on the night. What i saw in each goal were these observations:

1- Great passing

2- Someone was in the right place at the right time

3- Celebration can erupt in a blink of an eye.

Youth Ministry

1- Is the load being shared by other leaders?

As the lead youth pastor we usually start a lot of things. We cast vision & direction. We get excited and champion the cause. We pour ourselves into planning and being intentional with our energies. But are we passing the load to others so it isn't all on us? Even the great hockey players can't take on 5defensemen, hence the need for quality passing. WHen was the last time you passed off a ministry to a leader who is more than capable of running with it? When did you share the glory of a job well done with your team? How have you encouraged those around you for doing a great job? How have you stepped back and put yourself in a position to see the bigger picture to make sure your team is in the right spot?

2- Are the right people in the right place?

The goal/objective isn't going to be scored or completed unless the right people are in the right place. That right place starts with a teachable heart for Jesus to use. The right place needs to be the place where people pray for the movement of God to happen. If you are the lead youth worker it is your job to assess these critical pieces of youth ministry & set the tone for everyone around you!! You also need to step back and make sure members of your team are doing the job you have asked them to do as well as are they the best fit for what they are doing. I firmly believe that people like to succeed, but they also like to know they will be in a place where they feel they can make a difference in. Help them enjoy the highlights of youth ministry by being in the right place at the right time/season of ministry.

3- Celebrate NON-STOP!

The crowd at the arena was willing to make as much noise when the home team was behind as they were when the home team scored. Celebrate life change. Celebrate the moving of God. Celebrate as much as you can so students, leaders, parents or even the custodian cleaning up after you is seeing the joy of youth ministry cause God is moving all around you. I believe you can always encourage and always celebrate in the life of youth ministry so take as many opportunities to do both. Encourage your team, encourage your students. Celebrate with them as much as you can!

For all the goals that were scored i counted 8 other scoring opportunities. 8 chances that were missed. An erant pass, a player moving away from the 'right spot' when the puck was passed to him, a break a way that was stopped because of a trip up. I don't want the ministry I lead to be about the 'coulda, shoulda or wouldas' in life, i want the ministry i lead to capture every moment it can for the Glory of Christ and His kingdom.

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