This week I had a great conversation with my wife about the future of our church. It was so much fun to toss out huge changes in our hypothetical little restructuring dialogue at Starbucks that morning. I was shocked at how quickly massive shifts in policy and procedures were rolling off my tongue. How easily a list of players that should be immediately promoted (or let go) and pet programs that would be eliminated. Wouldn’t you have loved to be a fly on the wall for that conversation?
Well, this post has little to do those details – and everything to do with the principles that I think we stumbled on in that conversation. Here’s what I took away from it all (other than being I have no desire to run Saddleback Church – hahahaha) and a few thoughts that might help you, too:
Ask yourself what questions a new youth worker in your position would immediately ask about the youth ministry. What are the things they would be curious about? What programs lack purpose? Why DO we do it that way? Give yourself fresh, outside eyes and see what questions rise to the surface?
Ask yourself what changes would be a no-brainer. In the depth of your heart, you know some changes that have been difficult to make or even process. If someone coming in would make the changes effortlessly, what are you waiting for?
Ask yourself who they would do ministry with? And who they would let go? Who you do ministry with is one of the most critical aspects of longevity in ministry. People are life-giving or life-draining – who needs a season off in ministry? Who needs to be given their big break and brought onto the team? Don’t move as quickly on this point as you might the others – people are very subjective subject but there’s still value in taking time to evaluate your team.
Ask yourself what programs a new youth pastor would kill with ease. The sacred cow in your ministry may need to be killed. The outside eyes see them in seconds. Kill them quick!
Now don’t get in your head and start running someone else’s youth ministry – God called you there for this season so run it yourself! But don’t be afraid to look at it with the eyes of the outside. You might be surprised that something you haven’t seen at all would be so obvious to them!