Archives For Reach Students

Meet the ReachStudents Blog Contributors

Shane Stacey – September 3, 2014 Leave a comment

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Welcome to the refreshed ReachStudents blog! Subscribe to the blog by September 10 and be entered into a drawing to win a one-year free subscription to Interlinc. You’ll see the option at the end of this blog post.

Not only has the design of the blog been refreshed, but there are also a lot of new faces. I’m very excited that in addition myself, we will have some great friends and practitioners contributing monthly.

Here are the names of the blog contributors you’ll be hearing from regularly and why I’ve chosen them. Continue Reading…

Small Group Leader or Disciplemaker?

Reach Students – August 6, 2014 Leave a comment

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Titles matter. I can call my child my son or I can call him my kid. Both are true, but the former stirs up greater responsibility, affection and connection than the latter.

I think the titles we give one another in ministry have the same effect. Are you a small group leader or a disciplemaker? I don’t mean to suggest that these are mutually exclusive. They are not. Both can be true. But you also can be a small group leader and not be a disciplemaker.

My friends from Cadre Ministries and I developed this helpful assessment tool together to help identify if our relationships with students (or our spouses, children, co-workers or friends) are reaching their disciplemaking potential. Continue Reading…

Connect2Challenge

Not coming to Challenge? Never have? Not a problem. I get it. Challenge is simply a tool. It needs to fit into your ministry strategy. I get that. But when 240 churches from your movement come together, it’s not a bad idea to be dialed in to what God is saying, what He’s doing, and what initiatives or direction He is mobilizing them around together.

With that in mind, here are five ways you can connect without attending Challenge: Continue Reading…

Parents, Do the Work of an Evangelist

Reach Students – May 9, 2014 2 Comments

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Parenting is hard work. I have three children of my own and I can honestly say that parenting – although full of great joy – is often unpredictable, tiring and requires a great deal of intentionality. In the business of life it is easy for my parenting to turn into behavior modification. But what my two sons and my daughter need most is not to change their behavior. Often times their behavior or their attitude is merely a symptom of a greater need—the transformation of their heart.

So, how do we transform the heart of our child? Well, the first thing we should realize is that we can’t, for this is God’s work. But there are some things we can do to cooperate with God. In 2 Timothy 4:5, the Apostle Paul has a word for young Timothy that is a helpful reminder for parents, as well as how to view the spiritual formation in our children’s lives. Paul admonishes Timothy to “always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” Continue Reading…

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Summer often creates a different pace in youth ministry. For many this means less formal programming. This opens some extra space for some great relational ministry. With the open space in your schedule, consider how you can use the summer to build relationship with parents. Here are five ideas for connecting with parents in the summer. Continue Reading…

Raising the Evangelism Bar by Lowering It

Reach Students – April 30, 2014 Leave a comment

Evangelism Bar.001I realize that it may sound contradictory, but at times, the way you raise the evangelism bar in your ministry is actually by lowering it. What do I mean by this?

A common way of trying to raise the evangelism bar is with grandiose ideas and a bigger vision. In this model, students are challenged to “reach their school for Christ”. Or another outreach event is created and students are challenged to invite their friends. Or we create a teaching series on sharing your faith. We passionately share what to do and why to do it. By talking about evangelism, teaching on evangelism, and casting a bigger-than-life vision for reaching the lost we “raise the bar”.   Continue Reading…

One of the things I appreciate about our ministry partners at TIU and TEDS is that they are creating pathways for young emerging leaders designed to maximize their training AND minimize their costs. Dr. Bill Donahue leads an innovative pastoral leadership program at Trinity that will equip your students for a life of ministry! In just 5 years – instead of 7 – they can complete their college requirements and graduate with a Master of Divinity Degree from one of the finest seminaries in the world – TEDS!

It’s affordable, focused, developmental, and time-saving. Clearly costs for higher education continue to rise, putting stress on students and families alike. Thanks to some generous donors and TIU scholarship funds – and some very creative thinking – TIU and TEDS have crafted an approach that reduces costs by 60% and gets students started in their ministry career two years early.

I encourage you to go to the TIU website and get the details. As a key influencer in the EFCA and mentor in the lives of your students, Dr. Donahue and the TIU/TEDS leadership believe that you have a good grasp who may be interested in this unique pathway to ministry.

There are still a few slots open for this year’s cohort. Dr. Donahue would love to connect with any students who you believe would be good candidates. You can contact him at wdonahue@tiu.edu or the Director of Undergraduate Admissions, Jordan Bryant – at (847) 317-7000.

Faith Strengthens When It’s Given Away

Reach Students – April 7, 2014 4 Comments

blog give it away.001None of us stepped into student ministry so we could run a program. We all long to see a genuine movement of disciples developed, empowered and released to make disciples. What gives us all incredible joy in student ministry is seeing a teenager walking closely with Jesus and sharing that relationship with others.

This current generation, the Millennials, is the largest generation in history (Check out this book on Millennials). Not only are they quickly becoming one of our largest mission fields, but they also have the capability to be an incredible sending force. But we can’t keep simply doing youth group. We have to have a clear disciplemaking vision coupled with a process that develops sent-ones rather than groupies. If we don’t shift from being primarily a teaching organization that delivers information to an equipping organism that excels in imitation, then we’ll never see the disciplemaking movement Jesus always intended.

Strengthen It by Giving it Away

We all want to see our students’ faith strengthened, right? What if the way to strengthen their faith is by helping them learn to give it away? Can you imagine teenagers, youth workers and parents partnering together to take responsibility for those that God has placed in their sphere of influence?

We’re losing students in upper high school because, as Greg Stier of Dare2Share ministries often says,“they’ve played it, sung it, and heard it—and they are bored.” Have we unintentionally trained them to be consumers rather than releasing them to be contributors? At times, we’ve all lost our missional focus by concentrating more on our seating capacity (attendance) than on our sending capacity (mission). Training students in solid biblical theology is a must. But if it is truly biblical theology, then that theology will bring them to encounter the missionary God, who, just as he sent his Son, is in like-manner sending his church (Jn. 20:21)—young and old.

Our Missional Milestone

This is what is burning in the hearts of our ReachStudents team. So we’ve put a stake in the ground together as team. In the next 15 months we are praying and working to see 300+ churches introduced to Evangelism is Relationships, resulting in 5000+ students being trained and coached to actively cooperate with God in their friends’ journey toward Jesus.

Evangelism is Relationships was designed by our ministry partners at Cadre Ministries. They gave me the opportunity to be a part of updating it with them. If you are familiar with our Disciplemaking is Relationships training (Jesus-like disciplemaking made simple), then you’ll love Evangelism is Relationships. It’s all the same values and priorities.

The Heart of God

We know it is God’s heart that His church – including teenagers – are ones who have their hearts set apart with Christ as Lord AND are prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks them to give the reason for the hope that they have (1 Peter 3:15). If we miss the “AND” then we have missed the very heart of God (Mark 12:28-34).


How are you intentionally equipping students to give away their faith?

 

 

 

 

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