Dear Kids and Youth Leaders,
To those who lead and invest in kids and youth, I want to share a word of encouragement with you.
I’m here to say, what you do matters.
I don’t use this phrase lightly when I say it. When I say it, it’s because I believe with my entire being that what you do matters. There are only a few causes that my entire being makes a claim. And when I say it, it’s because I have lived it and know that it matters.
A while back, I was able to serve in a different capacity on the high school retreat. I have played multiple roles over the past nine years with these kids, and it came full circle on this retreat.
My first and youngest group of kids I took to kids camp are now high school freshmen.
I started my ministry at our church as a youth volunteer, and my first event was a fall retreat.
Last year I had the opportunity to speak on this retreat. And this year, I went as a small group leader. Here are a few of my reflections:
- Small group leading is life giving. On both sides.
- Small group leading is hard work.
- Small group leaders are called into the mess.
- Small group leading is exhausting when you mentally show up.
- Small group leading is literally the “meat” of ministry.
- Small group leading is where digestion occurs.
- I have said numerous times, a kid will not remember what the speaker said, but they will remember who showed up for them, who engaged them in life/a conversation, who invited them over, and who invited them in.
- Small group leading is where connection occurs.
- Small group leaders have the opportunity to set a kid up for lifelong relationships with loving, caring adults and a loving, caring Savior.
This is you!
There is a different layer of depth between a kindergartener, a 4th grader, and a 10th grader. But the idea and value of the role you play in the life of a kid is irreplaceable.
This was evident in my experience. It was needed and valued to go from up front to down on the lines and serve as a small group leader.
I do what I do because I believe in what you do. Anytime a kid engages with you, a moment happens. They feel loved, cared about, and can see Jesus in you showing up.
A kid spells time–L-O-V-E.
So, please hear me say you are a gift in the life of a few. Keep showing up and loving these kids.