Can you win in ministry?
Yes, I believe you can.
If you missed the first part, check out why I think it’s important.
In this post, I want to give you want our team has come up with as a definition of success and wins for this ministry year.
Our one-sentence definition of success: Preparing students to become lifelong followers of Jesus.
Plain and simple, this is why we do what we do. We want students to not just be follower of Jesus for middle school, high school, or a year or two in college. We want to give them what they will need to be a lifelong follower of Jesus.
Specific wins for this ministry year:
1. Students make a decision to follow Jesus.
Our main church’s mission statement is to reach people for Christ. This win flows right out of the heartbeat of our church. We just truly want to give many, many opportunities for students to actually make a decision to follow Jesus. The journey has to begin somewhere. We will measure these by actually counting and celebrating how many students make decisions on the nights we ask them too.
2. Students love church and invite their friends.
We want church to be fun. We want them to love coming. And we want to make it a place where they can feel comfortable inviting their friends. We will measure this one through attendance and first-time guests. We will also measure this to see if these first-time guests come back.
3. Students are known.
In order to truly prepare students to be lifelong followers, they need to be known. They need someone (and hopefully, more than one adult) to know their name, who they are, where they come from, and where they are at in their relationship with Christ. We will measure this through small group participation. Do all small groups have at least 2 leaders? Do we have effective ratios? Small groups are optional at our church, so are students actively involved? This is the best place to be known. This win flows directly out of my favorite youth ministry book of all-time, Revisiting Relational Youth Ministry.
4. Students serve.
We find exponential growth occurs when students serve, specifically within the church, within their own ministries, and on mission trips. We make this a specific goal of ours to get students to take ownership and serve. We measure this by literally counting how many students serve in regular volunteer roles or on mission trips.
5. Volunteers love serving.
In order to reach 1000s of students, we need hundreds of volunteer leaders. And we need these volunteer leaders to not just be a warm body; we need them to be bought in and loving what they do. If we can help create a culture where they truly love volunteering within student ministries, they will invite their friends, help create a culture that volunteers love serving in, and show students how great it is to serve and be at church. We will measure this one by volunteer numbers growth and retention from year to year.
Some of these wins have been adapted right from another great book, Deep and Wide. But these wins, we feel, truly reflect the culture we are trying to create and where we want to be at the end of the year.
With these wins and definition of success, we can help point people each and every week in these directions in order to motivate, empower, and move people towards winning and feeling “successful.”
In my next blog post, I’ll lay out the ways we break these down on a weekly basis and give people a way to help achieve these wins each night.