Thought this post over on Junior High Ministry was super and totally worth the read. Kurt has some great points about how ownership increases the excellence, even when the program potentially suffers. GEnius observation, here’s a clip before you head that way:

What you wouldn’t have seen much of is excellence; at least not in the way it is traditionally defined! The worship team struggled quite a bit, the guys in the tech room were consistently a slide (or two or three) behind at any given moment in the service, My microphone kept popping and getting feedback, and Saturday after church our cupcake girl shared that she wouldn’t be able to be there on Sunday.and hoped we’d still be willing to sell her cupcakes (which we did, of course).

Our visiting youth pastors are rarely impressed with the level of excellence they witness. I’m surprised, though, at how often they comment on the level of student involvement and ownership happening.

I share this to remind you that as you lead your junior high ministry you have a decision to make, and how you answer is determined mostly by what you value. Do you want your ministry to be marked by excellence or by ownership?

JG

 

Recently I realized that if I am expecting excellence from someone … they need to have the tools to get there.

In youth ministry that isn’t always easy or sometimes possible – often we make do with ministry hand-me-downs and meet in youth rooms made from the old converted sanctuary. But when you expect excellence from your people, make sure you’ve done your best to equip them.

  • Want great small group leaders? Make sure your training is thorough and complete. Include supplemental trainings via email or video when you see a gap in their preparedness.
  • Want to develop some great teachers? Invite them into your prep process and allow them to be a part of the debrief and evaluation process afterward.
  • Want to raise up the next youth pastor in your church? Give him/her the books and resources to read and a place to dialogue what they are learning.
  • Want great videos? Make sure your volunteer has access to a great camera and a fast machine to edit on.

Too often we just expect people to be great … without ever doing the hard work of clearing the path to greatness. You can’t ask them to create the world without giving them a paintbrush. This week look for some places where you have expectations that aren’t being met and see if there is a gap in helping someone realistically get there.

JG