Here’s an info graphic that has been showing up and making the rounds on blogs and Facebook. Adam McClane created this very helpful graphic that gives us a picture of our task to reach and invest in students: Here are a few thoughts I have on it:
1) Paid youth workers are more effective when they build a team: If you are the paid guy or girl and the ministry is centered on you, I would maintain that you are limiting your effectiveness. A team is clearly nearly needed to reach so many students in our communities and churches.
2) Paid youth workers should invest in volunteers JUST AS MUCH as they invest in students: Yes, this can be a controversial statement for some… Pastors, parents, and students, see you and I as the answer to students faith and struggles. However, the paid person can only invest and impact so many students. My premise is this:
If I can invest fully in 10 good leaders who in turn invest in 10 students, I have done better that just me investing in 10-20 students myself.
3) Volunteers are essential and their role should not be disregarded. So many volunteers I know, feel ineffective. Just last night I met with a great potential volunteer who shared that he had sat on the sidelines for a while, simply because he did not feel he could make a difference. This infographic clearly shows the need for an army of volunteers.
4) Volunteers should be given diligent training and investment: With so many students to reach and so many issues to face, student ministry is not easy. The paid person cannot possibly deal with every issue and eventuality and be effective. If the local church is able to invest in training and development of volunteers, students will be blessed and supported greater. By training and investment, I mean conferences, training days, books, podcasts. I am fortunate that my church takes leadership development seriously and we are able to take a team of volunteers to a yearly conference. The expense is high, but the investment is needed.
5) We need to depend on God in greater ways! The task ahead of us is massive. We need a massive God to help us tackle massive issues. If this infographic represented an Old Testament battle, the odds would truly be against us. However, we know the outcome of faithful men and women who pray…
What does this graphic tell you? What would you add to this list? What would you tweak or disagree with on my list?