A challenge to youth leaders to pray
Have you understood the value God places on those in your care?
The secret to getting committed to the young people in your group - and the leaders you work with - is to remind yourself of their immense value to God, and to you.
“The excuse maker” in all of us will try to dilute the sense of value we place on those in our care. We tell ourselves, “You’re doin' great just how you are!” or the other classic line, “Compared to some people, you’re not that bad”.
That line of thinking stinks because it avoids the true value of the person in order to make our own ride easier. It gives us the excuse we are looking for to slow down, take a nap, let those other folks take care of themselves.
Commiting to pray
On our Youth Ministry Team we made the commitment to pray personally for individual young people and for the ministering leaders we serve with. We did this to deliberately drown out our "excuse maker" and, instead, listen to God’s passion for us to commit our FIRST effort (not leftovers) to young people who come to belong, learn and reach out to God!
Excuses become irrelevant when the special and unique "shape" of each leader on your ministry team is seen as God’s PLACEMENT and gift to the team. Would you “diss” any other good thing God brought into your life or youth group? Leaders are imperfect but valuable gifts from God to enrich and equip your team to do the work he’s planned in your place and time. So guard the leaders from your own excuses by remembering their God-appointed place of importance.
The privilege of prayer
In the earliest days, God’s people Israel found they were unique among the very different nations they lived near. They had the privilege of walking CLOSELY with a mighty God. So they were encouraged not to “do the minimum” or to “do what you can and be happy with that”. They understood how great it was to walk with God:
What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the LORD our God is near us whenever we pray to him? (Deuteronomy 4:7)
The privilege of having a close relationship with God through prayer is so enormous. It is amazing that God would share our concerns as we bring them to him. We must reclaim our time and make the most of our privilege of praying for our youth and fellow leaders.
My callenge to youth leaders
So, let me ask you to put two "items" on your agenda today (however full it is):
1. Pick THREE young people who you know need a relationship with Christ or a BETTER relationship with Christ. Pray for all three, each day, for the next seven days.
2. Pick ONE guy and ONE girl leader from the youth ministry team. Pray for each one, in the same pattern as step 1.
Can you commit to that? You know you can.