Sometimes you read a quote and it just sticks with you. The following quote has been so clarifying to me over the past few weeks.
“Disciples are handmade, one relationship at a time.”
David Kinnaman, You Lost Me
I saw this quote on Twitter the other night. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. It’s one of the things about ministry that I love and hate. It’s why ministry coaching has been so important to me.
Relational ministry takes time and effort and I believe it’s incredibly effective. However, all of us reach limitations in our leadership because we can’t be the relationship builder for all the people involved in our ministries.
Here are some of my focus areas in order to make the most of my relational ministry.
1. More than one Youth Pastor
Traditionally, Youth Pastors are asked to be everything. Unfortunately, they try to be that sometimes. If this quote above is really true, then we need others to be the relational anchor in their lives. I can’t be the “youth pastor” for all of the students in high school, but I can find a youth pastor for almost all of the students that I have.
I have to focus on finding youth pastors for students. I can’t just find warm bodies.
2. Small Groups
Small Groups have to be a large part of what we do. It’s where most “youth pastors” reside. They allow students to “follow” as they interact with God’s word. They open the door to questions about life and faith and groups offer another opportunity for life changing, life giving relationships.
Small groups should be a focus because they offer a breeding ground for conversations that lead to steps in our faith. They provide opportunities for relational steps.
3. Disciples make disciples
Most youth ministries that I know of employ the come and see approach. Don’t get me wrong, this is a part of our role as disciples. We invite others into or around our life so they can see the power of God on our lives. However, it’s only part of our mission. Come and see must partner with go and tell. We need to teach our students how to go and tell. If disciples are handmade by relationships, then they must be able to see and learn about relationships.
This will be my concentration in the next few years. Working hard at discipling some students and leaders. We ought to be making disciples and those disciples ought to be making disciples through relationship.
What are some focus areas for you when it comes to relational ministry?
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