Maybe you’re living the dream and landed that Kid’s Ministry Director position you’ve always wanted or maybe you woke up one morning and found yourself in charge and you’re still trying to figure out how it happened. Regardless, the fact of the matter is that on any given weekend you’ve got a small army of volunteers looking to you for direction. Being “in charge” can sometimes feel like a pressure cooker. There’s always a lot to do and it never seems like there’s enough time to get it done. In this scenario, it’s easy to make mistakes...sometimes lots of them! Over the years I’ve learned a couple of things through trial and error that might keep you from making the same mistakes I did. So, without further ado, here are 5 pitfalls to avoid in kids ministry:
Attempting to do everything yourself. We don’t have to be the one man/woman show. This isn’t good for us as leaders, the volunteers we serve, or the kids. Look for the special gifts in others and give them the chance to grow in their abilities to reach and teach kids. The best leaders always empower others to be successful!
Trying to do too much. You cannot do everything...period. Decide what is most important and be okay with the fact that sometimes, less is more! Trying to do too many things at the same time will produce mediocre results and hinder your effectiveness. Decide what you can do, focus on that and then go hit a grand slam!
Being afraid of asking. There are times when we may need to ask for additional financial resources, more human resources, more space, or get approval to launch a new program. This can be a biggie and might require you to step out of your comfort zone but the truth of the matter is that you’ll rarely have what you don’t ask for. So be bold enough to champion what you believe in but do it with grace, and when you get turned down, and sometimes you will, handle it with maturity.
Talking about the need instead of the vision. My experience has been is that people will commit to a need for a season but they commit to vision for the long haul! True leaders know how to passionately communicate all that God desires to do in and through a particular ministry. For instance, recruiting new volunteers is easier when you share the impact that the giving of their time will make from an eternal perspective as opposed to sharing with them the fact that the infant nursery is short 4 volunteers. Everyone wants to join a winning team, so focus on what you’re doing and where you’re headed, not what you need.
- Doing something because that’s the way we’ve always done it. Some people tremble at the mention of the “C” word but the truth of the matter is that change is healthy. Anything that is living is changing. As a leader, one of your most important roles is to help people accept change but in order to do that, you have to be okay with change first! Yes, change is risky and often we fail to change because we fear failure. Don’t be afraid of failure - if anything, be more afraid of sliding into irrelevance. Doing the same thing over and over will get boring quickly and in the end, it will stifle momentum. Embrace change! Celebrate change! In fact be a “change champion” and when you do, you’ll see bigger and better results than you could ever hope for!