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Leadership

I’m a big advocate for student leadership, and have developed it over the past 19 years of ministry. At the onset, I would admit it wasn’t pretty, but it was a start. We simply invested in the students who were hot coals (those who were on fire for God, and would be more apt to help others catch the flame). Over the years, I’ve discovered a few key resources and ideas on student leadership.

The ideas:

1. Grow your personal relationship with Jesus. They will only be as strong, passionate etc. as you. If you’re a person who values God time, they will too.

2. God is calling everyone into leadership. It’s our job and challenge to come along side God and help. I think Moses with Joshua would be a good example. Moses was looking to grow future leaders and Joshua was willing to be lead (Numbers 13).

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3. Make the meetings both timely and intentional. We have some cream-of-the-crop students in our presence; please don’t waste their time. Give them some meat and potatoes, and challenge them in their faith journey

4. Set the example. Simple comment, but challenging in output. Use the student leader meetings to model leadership and meetings. This is something we often overlook. You’re the key leader in their lives; therefore, you’re the person they are being molded by.

I truly feel we have a tendency to overcomplicate things when we don’t need to and underachieve things when we shouldn’t. Please know you are a leader because God called you into leadership. It’s your job to walk with God and reach out to those he has put in front of you. Standards are good, but we can’t lose sight of God’s plan in ministry. I can’t make you passionate about student leadership—but God can.

I can offer a few tools to use as you lead your key students. I recommend checking out:

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1. Doug Fields—Youth Leader Training On the Go
2. Denise Van Eck—Leadership 101
3. Dennis (Tiger) McLuen and Chuck Wysong—The Student Leadership Training Manual for Youth Workers
4. LIVE: Leadership module
5. Andy Stanley—The Seven Checkpoints for Student Leaders

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