Why do we care so much about people committing to and attending the environments we lead? We care, stress, and worry when people are missing because we care about them and we believe in what we are leading. It matters to US very much! That Bible study, youth ministry, community group, or church service we are leading have a goal and we want people to experience it. Just a reminder from yesterday that no matter how much we want people to come to our THING we can not miss the chance to invest in those that are present and serve them in the moment. If we will focus on serving those that are at our event there will be time later to connect with those that miss. We can connect and we need to connect outside our EVENT bubble. I work with families so I know how busyness can keep folks from incredible events and environments. My goal is to help them stay plugged in and serve them in the middle of their busy life. Just because they have a ton going on does not mean that they do not love God or want to be connected with what is going on at our church or youth ministry. Here are some things that work for us to build community and connect week in and week out…
- RELATIONSHIPS – yes I said the R word and I cannot overvalue the importance of small group ministry in the lives of kids and teens and community groups for adults! Kids and teens needs adult leaders they can connect with. Adults need a place to slow down and belong. People need to know they are known and cared for and that comes from genuine relationships. Relationships are bigger that that environment you lead!
- WEBSITE – your website is the information door for your ministry open for parents, kids, and teens 24 hours a day. The ability for people to go back and check out podcasts, register for events, and just get caught up is HUGE for helping people to connect.
- SOCIAL NETWORKING – yes, Facebook and Myspace are so helpful in connecting with teens and now PARENTS who are staying connected more. You can use both to connect with tons of people.
- THE CELL PHONE – texting has taken over and it allows us to get quick info and make quick connections with people. When our group leaders need to connect with teens they all use the text message! It is not going away, get used to it!
- PATIENCE – do not give up on people. They may feel very connected to the environment you lead but just not be ready to make the attendance commitment you would like. You never know when that could change so slow down and be patient.
- PRAYER – when you notice people are not able to plug in do not worry, PRAY for them. They need that more than our gift of worry over why they did not show.
- BE AVAILABLE – we need to care about what is going on in other people’s lives! Seems simple but meet people where they are. Go to a ball game, go out for coffe. have someone over for dinner. After al of this we have to repeat to ourselves…”Not everyone does life like I do” then move on!
- BE READY – you never know who will be at the event you lead week in and week out. We might want to give our best and trust God for How He works in hearts and lives. He is kind of IN CONTROL!