The hope for all our ministries is that we will communicate the Gospel in a way that transforms people. That they will discover who Jesus is and that will change how they engage the world around them. What we do on Sunday morning though can quickly be forgotten. We have all seen people getting angry simply leaving the parking lot after service. Can we honestly say that the regular programming is having any impact if there is no change throughout the week? What if we engaged people on Sunday with Monday in mind. This is why I am pumped for Orange Conference 2016.
The theme for 2016 is “Monday is coming.” As leaders what if we communicated truth, evaluated our programs and shaped our interactions with students around this truth. The reality is the lives of our students, and their parents, can quickly crush the truths taught on Sunday. We have seen the struggle to get students to know the Bible, seen the fight with other activities in a student’s life and we’ve helped them navigate some of the junk that happens in their lives.
What if we began to shift how we do things. What if we are able to get connected with students throughout the week? Our ministry changes when we are not only connected but can bridge the gap between what we teach on a Sunday and the lives of our students throughout the week. What we communicate doesn’t change, but how we communicate it does to leverage the time that we have to make the most impact in the life of a student.
Here are some things I do to bridge the gap between Sunday and the rest of the week:
Weekly Home Groups:
Our student ministry revolves around our home groups. We meet weekly in the homes of our students. This helps us to get connected with students throughout the week. The coolest thing is that we as leaders are meeting students where they are; in their homes, on their turf, where they are comfortable in order to build lasting relationships and point them towards Jesus.
One of my daily goals is to encourage a student. I go through my list of contacts and just shoot a simple text message. See how their day is going and strike up a conversation. Let them know you care about them. I reach out to take students out during the week and process life with them. I share my life with them and I encourage my leaders to do the same. When this happens students see a faith that is engaged not only in church on a Sunday but in the daily grind of Monday.
Every week I send out a parents email. I utilize Orange resources and ideas to help equip parents. If we want to influence the lives of kids, we need to equip the key influences in their lives, their parents. From ways to navigate conversations about dating to links to resources, such as music, magazines or devotionals, equipping parents is a major way to impact students throughout the week.
Our ability to point students to Jesus greatly increases when we can stay connected with them throughout the week. I am excited for Orange Conference 2016 to hear about new ways to get connected with students. If you’re interested in attending this years conference head to http://theorangeconference.com/ to get more details and register!