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The two biggest lessons I learned from the children’s ministry world that youth pastors can immediate put in place is affirmation and exchange of information. Feel free to give a youth pastor an online high five and share with him/her what is working and not working your youth ministry.

Lessons Learned From Children Pastors

Over the last two months, I have been able to interact and observe the world of children’s pastors who are thinking orange.  My overall gut reaction is:  “Wow…..all these kid pastors really like, encourage, and engage each other.”  In fact I even went up and asked one of the children’s pastors:  “Why does it seem like every children’s pastor really truly cares about the other children’s pastor?”

He answered:  We really want to be the best children’s minister to our churches and we must rely and share with one another. Plus we are all online friends and not just “conference friends”.  When we interact we share about our lives and share about our ministry.

I was intrigued. I thought to myself, I (and some of the youth ministry folk) have a lot to learn from these children pastors who love kids ministry.

My point: The children’s ministry world has an unique place sharing that includes all types of children ministers that is ongoing.

I am a hypocrite because I have been skeptical, cynical, and argumentative towards “other” (youth) ministry leaders and organization, churches, theologies, and seminaries.  And now I am arguing that youth pastors need to learn how to play nice and collaborate with other youth pastors who they would not normally engage.  My sanctification process includes me running my mouth and reflecting why I was being such an idiot to other ministry leaders.  I am realizing to deeply respect youth ministry folk that are not just pointing the finger but really trying to do his/her (small or large) part in the youth ministry world.  Deconstruction is useless if there is no reconstruction offered.

I think the youth ministry world is a bit fragmented. (I know this is a general statement and I can be wrong) Youth pastors tend to align with what conference we attend, what books we read, what pastors we listen to, what denomination we hold to, what theology we subscribe to; and we act negatively towards the “other” youth pastors that don’t smoke the same stuff we are smoking.

The children’s ministry world seems whole and stable.

I am realizing the insane importance to have ministry specific friends of all different types.  Over the years I have learned to get along and play really well with other youth pastors that are not like me.

The two biggest lessons I learned from the children’s ministry world that youth pastors can adopt is: affirmation and be available to exchange ministry specific information.  All I am saying is feel free to give a youth pastor an online high five and share with him/her what is working and not working in your youth student ministry.

If you want to learn a little bit about the children’s ministry world check out the children’s ministry top 100 blogs.  I guarantee you will be impressed with the large and all-inclusive community and great content each children’s ministry blog is providing.   My favorite children’s ministry blogs:  Children’s Ministry Online , Sam Luce, Children’s Minister Blog, Matt Mckee, Creative Kids Pastor, Jonathan Cliff, iheartchildren, Effective Children’s Ministry , Impulsive Joy, Emerging Kids, and Small Town KidMin

About Jeremy Zach

Orange XP3 Specialist | Youth Worker | MDIV | Hot Sauce Addict | Dr. Dre Beats Lover

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8 comments

  1. I’m on board. There are 142 different brands of pencils but they all have the same lead. Let’s get over the outside and write stories with what’s on the inside.

  2. Jeremy I agree wholeheartedly. I have been on the other side of this thought for the past 10 years. I have been one who wants to network with other YP’s, do events with them and help grow God’s KINGDOM and NOT our personal ministry kingdom. It pains me to see so many YP’s be so inward focused and not Kingdom focused. We think we’re Kingdom focused but when we feel threatened our true motives come out – we are MY kingdom focused.

    Thanks for this post. Ministry shouldn’t be this way. YM isn’t the only facet I see this in either. I am starting to see this within the worship side of ministry too. Everyone wants to be someone and we’re so willing to step all over others to help that become a reality.

    How much this must really sadden Jesus. Have we become ‘money changers’ within God’s church – twisting, perverting and destroying the way ministry should be?

  3. Great blog post. I dream of a day when not just Childrens and Student ministers are collaborating but also the Church.

    Thanks for your humble thoughts an the subject.

  4. I youth pastored in the SBC in Kansas City for 4 years and felt the competitiveness with other youth pastors the whole time I was there. Then I moved to Tulsa and the Baptist Convention of OK student department works extremely hard to break down the walls for its youth pastors. I have been blown away by how many friends I have in the Tulsa area and state because of the model set by the people who work in the student dept at the convention. It is an uncommon, but good thing to see.

  5. Kidmin leaders are taking over the world! :)

  6. Thanks for the great article and links. I am a ten year youth ministry veteran that has now stepped into a NextGen leader role (overseas ministries from children to young adults) that needs input, resources, and ideas from the childrens’ ministry world. Just what I needed! 😀

  7. Thanks! Ok…the machine tells me my “comment is a bit too short!” All I wanted to say is I’m glad you like my blog. Thanks! To the virtual machine: much harder to write short than long… :-)

  8. Thanks! Ok…the machine tells me my “comment is a bit too short!” All I wanted to say is”I’m glad you like my blog”. Thanks! To the virtual machine: much harder to write short than long… :-) ….”looks like you’ve already said that…” the machine says…Help! Jeremy!!! I’m going to kill the machine! And you can delete this… that’s fine…

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