What if they said they could give you the secret to making disciples of your students with lasting fruit for the rest of their lives—all beginning in your student ministry? . . . Yeah, right. That’s a youth pastor’s dream.
It’s funny how in ministry we can get so caught up in periphery and details that we forget the basics. There is an activity that you can teach your students, an activity you can show your students, an activity that you can participate in with your students, that can change their lives forever. Like anything else, they will get out of what they put into it. Actually, they will get a lot more out of it than they put into it. . . . What is it?
It’s called a quiet time, time alone with God, a devotional time. It has a lot of names, but it’s simply sitting quietly. talking and listening to God in prayer. It’s great to start with reading His Word, then sharing with Him what’s on your heart, lifting up all your concerns, then listening to Him speak to your heart.
Yeah, I know, there’s a few of you that may have rolled your eyes at this concept. You may have thought, “A quiet time? I tried that a few times. Kids just won’t commit to that anymore.” Or “That’s so basic. They know they should be doing that. I’m on to more important things.”
If you haven’t talked about spending time with God with your students in a while, the beginning of the year is a great time to start.
Be sure you either provide them with or tell them how to get the right tools to help them be successful in their time with God. A devotional book and a journal can be powerful tools to get started and stay on track. There’s a lot of good stuff out there, including our devotional series. Encourage them to set a time, set a place, and then just do it. If they miss a day, encourage them to just get back on track the next day. They can do 5 minutes a day or 20 minutes a day, depending on their maturity. (Check out the sidebar in this e-mail with instructional pages 2-3 from the My Quiet Time series.)
Here’s the real challenge for you as a youth pastor: after you teach your students how to spend time with God, then every week share with them a highlight of what God spoke to you that week. You can do this through social media, when you speak to them on Wednesday nights, or through whatever method you choose. But tell them what God is saying to you and give them a venue to let you know what God is saying to them.
Wouldn’t it be crazy if something as basic and elementary as a quiet time revolutionized your student ministry this year?