Sunday, November 24, 2013

101 lessons I have learned over the years in Youth Ministry

Over the years I have had the chance to work in some of the top churches in America and for some of the greatest leaders in the country.  As a result I have learned so much over the years.  

I took the time to write down 100 quick thoughts I have learned over the years as a youth pastor.  I still have so far to go and so much to learn but am grateful for what God has taught me this far.  Can't wait to see all I get the chance to learn in the future.  

I could probably list over 500 lessons and counting but here is 101 lessons i have learned over the years in youth ministry.  

  1. A Call to Ministry is a must:  There are days you will want to quit that you will need to reflect back on your call
  2.  Relationships with your church are a must
  3.  Relationships with your youth workers are a must
  4.   Relationships with your community takes work but is the key. 
  5.  Your Youth Workers are your most valuable resource
  6.  Celebrate the wins with your team. 
  7.  Share the gospel often
  8.  A gospel centered event without effective follow up will never lead to disciples. 
  9.  Loyalty is a must.
  10.   Delegations without Definitions equals Disaster. 
  11.   Leadership is a must. 
  12.  Be clear in your vision.
  13.  Bring the people along with you.  If you get too far ahead you will committee ministry suicide. 
  14.  Don’t ask ask ask.  
  15.  Don’t use all your “relationships coinage” all at once.
  16.  Your family must be put before your ministry.
  17.  School activities are a must to attend. 
  18.  Preach out of God’s word and not just whatever is the most popular topic. 
  19.  Never do an event without sharing the gospel 
  20.  Discipline the students is a must. 
  21.  Put your students around mature adults not just college students.  Teenagers need more adults in their lives. 
  22.  Teenagers do not need more friends they need more leaders in their lives. 
  23.  Communicate Communicate Communicate
  24.  Don’t make it “Your” ministry.  Allow your family to do life with you in ministry. 
  25.  Pride will kill your ministry. 
  26.  The stage is not to make you famous but to make God famous. 
  27.  Never overlook any student.  You never know if they are the one that God wants to use to start a movement in your community. 
  28.  Never Assume. 
  29.   Don’t be afraid to confront students or leaders.  Be humble but speak up. 
  30.  Humble confidence is needed in your leadership.
  31.  Ministry is always happening.  Sometimes “it” can wait until tomorrow. 
  32.  There is nothing wrong sending someone to voice mail and calling them back the next day.  Just remember to call them back. 
  33.  Hand written notes go a long way. 
  34.  Be sure your students and volunteers understand the WHY so that they will do the HOW. 
  35.  What good is a video if noone is coming to watch it.  Point: don’t spend all the time being creative and not building relationships. 
  36.   Excellence is the only option. 
  37.  Stay Simple.  The more complex you get the less impact you will have. 
  38.  Stay Connected.  Don’t be a “green room” youth pastor.
  39.  Share the stories often. 
  40.  Pray for your pastor daily.
  41.  Stay in line with the vision of the church. 
  42.  Baptize weekly
  43.  Know when to speak up and when to shut up. 
  44.  Followship is just important as Leadership.  Know when to Lead and when to Follow. 
  45.  Raise the bar with your youth workers and students. 
  46.  Use Social Media often to share the story. 
  47.  Be Self Motivated
  48.  Stay away from Negativity.  Does not good! 
  49.  Smile a lot,
  50.  be quick to listen,
  51.  say thanks often,
  52.  find opportunities to hang with other staff members.
  53.  Attend Church Weekly. 
  54.  Never say “I can’t.”  There is always a way. 
  55.  Don’t overcomplicate the gospel. 
  56.  Equip the Saints to do the work of the ministry.
  57.  Spend time w/ God daily and do it in the morning. 
  58.  Reflect yearly
  59.  Be Creative in your programming. 
  60.  Don’t procrastinate. 
  61.  Read books monthly
  62.  Pray Pray Pray
  63.  A Building does not keep people relationships do
  64.  A big budget does not mean big success. 
  65.  Never let discouragement set in
  66.  Keep your integrity and Character high
  67.  Don’t add to your numbers to impress others.  Just post what you actually had and rejoice in what God did. 
  68.  Work Hard!!!
  69.  To be an A leader hang out with other A leaders
  70.  Know the “seasons” of ministry and prepare your family for them. 
  71.  “People and rubber bands have one thing in common: they must be stretched to be effective." John Maxwell
  72.  Whenever you encounter a hill, keep pushing & hoping. There's probably a downhill on the other side
  73.   Never wait for a "storm" to hit. Always be ahead of the storm.
  74.  Ask the question: What are we doing in our life today that if God removed his hand we could still do? What are you trust the spirit of God for?
  75.  Never Over Promise and Under Deliver
  76.  Never say anything behind someone’s back that you don’t have the guts to say to that persons face. IT will get back to them. You might not care if it does but either way it is ungodly!!!
  77.  Go where God calls you no matter what everyone else says!!! Don’t allow others to write your story only God!!!
  78.  Don’t be lazy Excute!!!
  79.  Discipline = work. In sports/family/work/marriage it takes discipline. Discipline is not always easy or fun but is always necessary.
  80.  Tradition is not always Bad
  81.  Attending healthy conferences keeps you fresh.
  82.  You never know who you are talking too!!!
  83.  Give hilariously with your money always!!! Look at a man’s pocketbook and you will find his true love!
  84.  Bigger is not always better
  85.  Call people Back, Return emails, respond on facebook and twitter
  86.  Time Management saves you hours in a day!!!
  87.  Fail Fwd always. When you fail, not if, always learn and grow from your mistakes.
  88.  You can’t score unless you shoot
  89.  Always be honest even when it is hard.
  90.  Own up to your mistakes
  91.  You are one mistake away from a carrier ending decision.
  92.   Never Overreact Stay Calm, take time to think about it then make a decision.
  93.  Don’t talk too much people will lose respect for you. Be wise in what comes out of your mouth. Prov 18:21 The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.
  94.  Don’t burn bridges. Disrespect and dishonor will burn bridges. Stand up for what you believe but don’t take on battles that are disrespectful.
  95.  Loyalty is not something that you should have to demand it should just be given.
  96.  Always be ready you never know when something unexpected is going to happen
  97.  Don’t let Orbital Decay happen. – When a rocket ship takes off it has amazing power. Once in space though it shuts off is busters and could get into orbital decay. It will then remain stagnate. The only way out of orbital decay is to hit the rocket busters again. This is also known as the S Curve Principal. Is your family, ministry or life in orbital decay?
  98.  Cease every opportunity
  99.   Keep your attitude in Check.
  100.  Try something new, even if it is “not you.”
  101. Love your spouse!!!  Never give up on each other.  God put you together. 


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