What Connecting Looks Like

Jason’s adult leaders didn’t realize how “stagnant” many of their kids were… until they saw it on a giant whiteboard right in front of their face!

It’s fun to get emails from youth workers and adult mentors who are connecting with kids. I’ve been getting a lot of these lately– people who have read my book, CONNECT, or have seen our free CONNECT video, and are using the principles to not only start conversations with teenagers, but using the principles out of chapter 14 to do the sticky notes exercise, taking a spiritual inventory of their group.

Jason, a youth worker from New York just took his entire adult leadership team through the sticky notes exercise using a giant whiteboard. Here’s his results (I blurred the names for anonymity). Notice the “trends” of where the names landed.

Does that look like your group? (I’ve done a lot of these trainings- and a TON of them look just like this!)

A lot of stagnant kids, huh? Jason noticed this and sees how connecting might really make a difference. Here’s what Jason wrote me this morning:

I should’ve emailed you sooner to let you know how much that book has meant to this ministry so far. I did the sticky note exercise last month and it has really shook up the leader’s view of their roles. I have a great group of adults that really love serving the teens, but I do not think they totally understood what kind of an impact they have, or could have, until they saw that board. I attached the picture of it for you to see. As you will see, we have a pretty stagnant group. The leaders have responded in force to change that! They realize now more than ever how important it is to be creating one on one relationships that will give them the ability to help a teen take that next step towards Christ and a more devoted relationship with Him.

I also changed our team expectations. I have now added that they need to be having a one on one with a teen at least once a month. For the ones that still didn’t get it I broke it down like this: We have 14 leaders and 50 teens attending regularly on Sunday nights. If each leader took a different teen out once a month that equals 168 teens a year. This means each teen will be able to have a one on one conversation with an adult 3 times a year! So if we look at it like that it also impacts us to realize that even twice a month isn’t a stretch. That doubles the amount of one on ones and infinitely multiplies the amount of influence an adult can have on a teen!

Thanks again for all you do for youth ministries!

Jason

It’s fun to see how Jason is making sure that no kid is missed! Wouldn’t you love it if you knew that your own son or daughter had a place where they were loved and cared for… a place where everyone knew their name, and where a positive adult role model actually hung out with them and mentored them?!

Thanks for CONNECTING Jason!

About Jonathan McKee

president of The Source for Youth Ministry, is the author of over twenty books including the brand new If I Had a Parenting Do Over, 52 Ways to Connect with Your Smartphone Obsessed Kid; Sex Matters; The Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket; and youth ministry books like Ministry By Teenagers; Connect; and the 10-Minute Talks series. He has over 20 years youth ministry experience and speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers and parents on his websites, TheSource4YM.com and TheSource4Parents.com. You can follow Jonathan on his blog, getting a regular dose of youth culture and parenting help. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.
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