I totally revamped my approach to small groups in our ministry recently.
We have tried a multitude of curricula, ideas, books, formulas and approaches. It has been topical and as simple as opening the Bible and walking verse by verse. Still, I was finding an interesting trend. Many of my students who had grown up with us still stared at me blankly when I asked the question:
“What’s your relationship with Jesus look like?”
As I started to dig deeper, I learned some things about my students:
They knew who Jesus was. They admitted they didn’t know Jesus.
What did this mean for my students?
What did this mean for my small group leaders?
(In a discussion with one leader recently, she actually used the words, “Just let me talk to them more; I can save them.”)
Ouch! This was becoming a lose/lose for everyone. No one felt heard or understood even when their hearts were in the right place.
So I sat down, prayed and decided to seek Jesus. I knew He wanted to reach these students in a way that caused them to understand His love. I knew it would take His salvation and moving and that I wouldn’t find a formula to put into action.
So what did I do? Tune in for Part 2 on how I threw my small groups on their head.
Have you noticed any of these trends with your students or leaders?
Leneita Fix is the director of ministry development for Aslan Youth Ministries, a family-focused urban ministry serving Monmouth County, N.J., and Haiti. She has been working in some form of youth and family ministry for almost 22 years.
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