Ministry hasn’t stopped happening since the Coronavirus came onto the scene and churches closed physical buildings. If anything ministry has ramped up.
By this time, you have settled into some type of rhythm with your ministry programming, utilizing social media, Zoom, Google Hangouts or the House Party app. The last few months have made some of you weary, some of you frustrated, some of you ready for life to get back to “normal” (when I say some of you… I mean all of you), and some not sure what to do if things don’t open back up soon.
You have an opportunity to make it personal even though this you are currently living in a very impersonal world. Right now, a personal phone call means way more than a zoom call with 30 people. Right now, a hand written note to encourage someone means way more than saying it in the comments section of your Instagram live feed. Right now, pulling up a lawn chair in the front yard of a student who has parents on the front lines fighting this pandemic means way more than an online scavenger hunt.
Here are some ideas as you continue ministry in these uncertain times:
- Call Every Leader and Student - When you call the people you serve, you are letting them know they are worth your time. That may be the most important way to spend your time right now. When someone knows they are worth your time, they will decide what you have to say is worthwhile. Set a goal to call everyone that is a part of your
- Write Every Leader and Student - Who doesn’t like to get mail? Writing an encouragement note is a lost art and needs to happen more often. When a leader gets a word of encouragement in the mail, it doesn’t just bless that leader but each family member in the home benefits from those caring words. When a student gets a note from their youth pastor, it’s a big deal and on top of that encourages that student’s parents too. Writing a note builds trust with that student and also their family.
- More Than Content - Content is plentiful on the world wide web. Entertainment is abundant online, and there are people that are very good at it. If you are putting the majority of your time into content creation you are going to miss a golden opportunity to care for, empower and equip those involved in your ministry. The main course of your ministry should be saturated with as many personal connections, spiritual conversations and space to listen as you can handle. In a world that currently feels out of control, people need to be reminded of who they are, how much they are loved and that there is hope beyond what they see and feel. What students and leaders need can’t be found online, because its another human being that sees something in them that is special.
No matter where you find yourself today, know that you are not alone. Be encouraged, your calling isn’t through a screen but through personal relationships with those you serve. Look at this ministry landscape as a momentum builder for the future.
About the Writer - Kent Bjurstrom is the pastor of student ministries at Northview Church located in central Indiana with 13 campuses. With over 12 years of student ministry experience in worship & pastoral roles, his desire is to see middle school and high school students enter into a life changing relationship with Jesus Christ and help them put their faith in motion. Kent loves to network and connect with other youth workers to encourage one another and get better together. He blogs and has a number of free resources at www.pastor2youth.com.
Kent and his wife Stephanie have been married for 14 years. They have 4 children, Trey, Colby, Cayden, and Kaly. In the very rare downtime with family, he enjoys watching college football & basketball, playing golf or at least hitting the driving range and playing guitar. He dreams of cage diving with great white sharks at Guadalupe Island.