Tuesday, May 21, 2024
Tuesday, May 21, 2024
HomeAll The NewsSTUDENT MINISTRY: Handing Off Ministry

STUDENT MINISTRY: Handing Off Ministry

As the primary student ministry worker in a small to mid-sized church, it is easy to feel that you have to be the one to do and lead in every ministry endeavor. For those who are paid to serve, that feeling is compounded by a desire to feel useful. However, one of the greatest things you can do as a ministry leader is to equip people for the work of ministry. That means handing off ministry to those that are ready.

This past week was Easter, and that meant lots of activity for those of us on staff. There is a desire to do things with excellence and prepare a worship service that encourages worshippers to embrace the truths of the day. With all that in mind, I found myself behind and unable to complete an activity for our church families that we have done in years past — “egging” our children and students. “Egging” is hiding 11 candy-filled eggs and one empty egg to represent the resurrection at each family’s home. Realizing I wasn’t going to have time, I had given up on the idea until I received a message from one of our young adults. She wanted to take on the project with one of our students. It was a huge success, as the team was able to reach out to 11 different families. I could have told my volunteers that I didn’t want them to take on the project, fearing that they wouldn’t do it just like I wanted. (And they didn’t; they did it better than I would have — they got crafty and provided personalized baskets for each child and student!) I was reminded of how great it is to involve others in ministry.

When handing off ministry to other adults or even students, there are some things to remember:

• The same Holy Spirit that is at work in you is at work in them. This little nugget of truth is important to remember as we approach decisions, ministry and many other things. It is easy to think that God speaks to us in bigger ways than those around us. We may hear God more clearly because we are seeking to listen more, but the Holy Spirit indwells every believer. John 14:26 tells us that the Holy Spirit is our helper and will remind us of what Jesus has taught us. With that type of assistance, every believer can serve in ministry.

• Give good instructions, but leave room for creativity. As the lead in the area of family ministry, the responsibility of student and children’s ministries lands on my desk. If something goes sideways in those areas, I am the one that is held accountable. There are two things we need to remember. First, if we don’t give good instructions, we can’t expect volunteers to meet expectations. Two, we are not looking for perfection. Our goal is to equip the saints for ministry (Eph. 4:12). We are looking for faithfulness and a desire for excellence.

• There are going to be failures. You can teach, coach and encourage adults and students to do the work of ministry, and there will still be times they let you down. What do you do in these situations? Sit down with your volunteer and talk through the challenges they encountered. Look for solutions together and help your volunteer understand how they could do it better next time.

Let’s help the next generation embrace ministry and multiply our impact. Join us at Facebook.com/groups/StudentMinistryMattersCommunity to continue the conversation about equipping others for ministry.