How to Be a Better Youth Leader

youth group

A lot of Christians think they aren’t cut out for youth ministry. But if you love Jesus and you care about kids, everything else falls into place.

In my five years working with middle school students I’ve met multiple 80 year olds who are incredible youth leaders—and it’s not for their spunky personalities and crazy dance skills. They love Jesus and they love kids. When you boil it down, that’s what really matters.

If you start with Jesus, all of the intricacies of youth leading should align conceptually, biblically, and practically. You should be able to trace everything back to Jesus.

Here are ten things every youth leader should know:

1. Have a purpose for everything

Let’s be honest. From the outside looking in, there’s a lot of weird stuff that happens at youth groups. Beach ball ballet, cricket-spitting contests, fruit baseball, and an endless list of games, skits, and programs that don’t seem in any way connected to sharing the gospel.

But if you know the purpose behind each component, then even the goofy and weird parts make sense.

Some games give lonely, left out, or neglected kids the chance to be noticed, cheered, and celebrated. Other games force kids to work together—regardless of who they’re friends with at school.

Wacky leader skits can create laughter, break down walls, and show kids that there is a childlike joy in everyone. For leaders, those same activities can offer an opportunity to step out of their own comfort zone and put kids before themselves.

I’ve worked with leaders who refused to put themselves in front of kids and be goofy alongside them because “it wasn’t their gifting.” It’s definitely important to recognize what you’re good at and what you’re not good at (so you know how you’re best suited to serve your team), but if we understand the why behind each aspect of youth group, it becomes a lot less about us and a lot more about the kids, Jesus, and the ways we let God use us.

2. Humble yourself

The more cool, holy, or amazing you present yourself as, the more distant kids will feel from you.

You’re also the person who happens to be proclaiming the gospel and sharing about Jesus—do the math.

Leaders should show kids that Jesus meets them right where they are, loves them as they are, and desires to be a part of their lives right now—not once they become as cool, holy, and amazing as their leaders.

When Kids Hurt
When Kids Hurt is a great resource to help you navigate the adolescent world.

You were a kid once. If you’re made of flesh and blood, you probably sinned once, too. It’s not always best to share all the details of your sin without a relational foundation, but the more vulnerable you are with kids, the more likely they are to share the sin in their lives too. If we hide, so do they.

Humility isn’t just important for our relationships with kids. If you serve in a youth ministry, chances are good that you work with a team of volunteers.

Serving in ministry together is a surprisingly dangerous opportunity for selfishness to creep into our lives. It’s easy to feel like by being on the team we are fulfilling our duties, checking the box, or doing our time. But if you’ve committed to being a part of the team, share the load. Don’t dump everything onto one person—especially not the person giving the message. If someone else on your team is directly communicating the gospel, help that leader give kids their best by allowing them to focus on preparing their message.

3. Seek the kids in the corners

No matter how awesome your youth group is, there will always be kids in the corners. The ones who show up because their parents made them come, or a cute boy or girl is there too. They think the games are dumb and the leaders are weird. Or maybe they just want everyone else to think they’re too cool to be there. Either way, God has brought them to your youth group, and he’s entrusted them to you for an hour or two each week.

Sometimes kids genuinely aren’t interested in what’s going on, and you can’t and shouldn’t force them to join in. But sometimes kids stand in the corners to see if anyone will notice.

If a kid without friends comes to youth group, where he/she doesn’t have friends, how do you make the body of Christ look different than school? Involve them. Love them. Imitate God’s relentless pursuit of their hearts.

4. Share the joy of the gospel

The gospel isn’t boring. A lot of kids think it is, because their only exposure to it is from reading a translation of a 2,000-year-old book, or listening to messages crafted for adults. Jim Rayburn, founder of Young Life (a youth ministry designed for kids who don’t go to church), once said “It’s a sin to bore a kid with the gospel.” Whether or not you agree with Rayburn, Christians can’t overlook the potential damage of presenting the most exciting truth in the history of the world as stale, old, and irrelevant. The Bible is living and active (Hebrews 4:12), and there are countless ways to show kids that the life and truth it contains is applicable to their lives today.

5. Know your kids

Knowing your kids means more than just knowing who they are. It means knowing how they will respond to different situations, and preparing your events with them in mind.

Some kids love being the center of attention, and some kids fall apart when you put them in front of a group. It’s important to give kids equal opportunity to shine, but the risk of humiliating a kid or making them feel alone and outcast is not worth the potential reward of making them feel adored.

If a kid is checking out your youth group for the first time and you’ve never had any interaction with them, you might want to be careful about throwing them into a game that requires them to be outgoing and comfortable in front of everyone.

It’s also important to know where your kids are at spiritually. This doesn’t mean you should ask every kid who comes through the door, “Do you believe in Jesus?” Those conversations should happen, but not before you develop a relationship with them and earn the right to ask those deeply intimate questions.

There are countless reasons why a kid might walk in through the doors of your youth ministry, and a lot of them aren’t Jesus (at least, not from the kid’s perspective). Over-spiritualizing a kid’s experience can actually prevent them from having a spiritual experience. St. Francis of Assisi is often attributed with saying, “Preach the gospel always, and if necessary, use words.” Youth ministry is an excellent context to practice reflecting Christ through the way you love and live.

6. Don’t embarrass kids*

Kids live in constant fear of humiliation. The last place they should have to live out their worst nightmares is at youth group—where they are also learning that they are loved and valued by God.

*See #5 and #1. If you know a kid well enough and you’re confident that their class-clown spirit will allow them to embrace and appreciate the experience, and the embarrassment serves a purpose, mild embarrassment may be acceptable.

7. Meet parents

You could be the nicest, most caring and trustworthy person on the planet, but if parents don’t know you, how can you expect them to trust you with their kids?

Building a relationship with parents is especially important for middle school and elementary school ministries, where kids are fully dependent on their parents to even be able to show up at your events. Sometimes meeting parents is effortless because they actively seek out the leaders who work with their kids. Other times, meeting parents takes work.

Even if they don’t care who you are or who their kids hang out with, it will always be worth it to you in your ministry to get to know the people who have raised the kids God has placed at your feet. When kids leave, walk them out to whoever picks them up. Better yet, offer to give them a ride, and use it as an opportunity to introduce yourself to their parents. Don’t let the inside of the church be the only place your life overlaps with your kids’.

8. Put your relationship with Jesus first

This may seem selfish in a way, but the reality is, the more we put Jesus first, the more we love those around us. When you put your relationship with Jesus first, the purpose and significance of everything you do and say to others is amplified, not reduced.

Phrases like, “You can only lead someone as far as you’ve gone” may be cliché, but they still carry weight. If you aren’t pursuing your own relationship with Jesus, how can you honestly encourage kids that it’s important to their faith? If you aren’t reading your Bible, praying, and surrounding yourself with Christians who are wiser than yourself, you aren’t offering your best to your ministry, your kids, or God. These are your tools of the trade, and if you aren’t using your tools, how can you do your job?

9. Honor your commitment

Hopefully getting involved with a youth group wasn’t just a passing fancy you had in church one day. Stepping into ministry of any kind is something that should be prayerfully considered, discussed with God and with wise people in your life, and surrounded with spiritual preparation.

If you’ve committed to leading kids at your church or through another ministry, honor God, your kids, and the leaders on your team by being trustworthy, accountable, and invested in the work you are doing together.

Today’s kids have been dubbed “the fatherless generation.” Youth leaders can’t abandon them too. Leaving ministry should be considered just as carefully and prayerfully as entering it.

10. Get a mentor

One of the biggest dangers facing people in ministry is burnout. It’s easy to be excited about something when you first get going, but after a couple years, or a decade, how do you stay excited? And more importantly, how do you draw from your experience while still treating each experience and each kid as something entirely new and wonderful?

The key is having a mentor.

If you are constantly pouring into the lives of kids and nobody is pouring into you, sooner or later you’re going to feel empty. Whether that mentor is a pastor, a more experienced leader, or a wise friend from church, you need somebody who can offer you fresh perspective, hold you accountable, pray for you, love you, and inspire you to keep going (Hebrews 10:24).

What else do you think youth leaders should know? Tell us in the comments!

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  1. says

    Actually, here's another one for those NOT in youth ministry: NO, Youth Ministry is NOT "something you do before you get a REAL job as a pastor somewhere." That attitude really drives me nuts…

  2. says

    Great things to remember
    Said it kind of already but be sure each child knows how special they are to you and even more to God.
    Teach them to keep their eyes on Jesus
    be there no matter time or place

  3. Glenda Bailey-price says

    I think we are sometimes afraid of them can work both ways..the youth at our church are a recent cookout I just went and sat with them…interested in them just to hang out..they were so warm and welcoming..i thought they might think I was crashing in their space…..but no…I was interested in hanging out and seeing what was happeining in their lives…and they were interested in what I had been doing… even with the ones who are into drugs and alcohol….need us …they might not admit it..but when we show love to them..and not ridicule..just love and guidance..i think its then they begin to listen….I thought I was just cut out maybe for working with the kids until some young men God put in my path proved me other wise…they had been in street gangs..i know they wondered why this old grannie cared about them…but I did..and now they help with youth groups called jabez in mexico.. made me think of timothys grandma in the Bible how she influenced timothy…and probably his friends….don't be afraid of them…they need us to take part in their lives…you never know who doesn't have a dad or mom ..or has been shut out….problems at school….worrying about being accepted by (the crowd) and following them…… my response to them when asked why do I care.. I care about you because I care about what has happened to you or…is about to happen to you…and there is someone else that loves and cares about you….enough to die for you and me..and is here to help you…

  4. Charles Hadfield says

    We don’t have an actual youth group, in fact we have very few youth as we are a small congregation. I would like to start one for the few teens and early 20’s but I don’t know how to go about it. Has anyone some suggestions for me? Any advice would be appreciated too, I realise there are serious misgivings on the part of some when an elderly man is interested in the youth but I don’t want to let that stop me. What sort of format do you use? How much bible or bible study is involved and what sort of games are played.

    Thanks for your help, in advance.


    • Ryan Nelson says

      Hi Charles,

      Are there others in your church who are interested? I’d highly recommend bringing this to the leadership at your church. If there isn’t an existing ministry for young people, then they can encourage other individuals in the congregation to join you. There needs to be a clear partnership between the leadership at the church and your new ministry.

      As far as pulling this off practically, sometimes special events are a great way to work into a regularly scheduled youth group. For example, you might start encouraging the teens and early 20’s people to get together to watch a football game, or have a BBQ—a large get together of some sort where you can cast your vision for the ministry, or even start to learn what they want and need. There are many different kinds of youth groups, and each is catered to different ages, walks of life, and spiritual maturity.

      I would encourage you to consider treating teens and early 20’s as separate groups. I’m not sure if you were suggesting two separate groups or not, but they are in very different places in life, and will see themselves as separate. Some of those people in their early 20’s could be very effective leaders for your ministry to the teens.

      There are a lot of great resources out there for getting massive lists of crazy games (a lot of them are hit or miss). Here’s a list my friend Shane Prudente put together: This is a good one as well:

      From a kid’s perspective, Bible study is generally separate from the main youth group meetings. It’s an open invitation to dig into the Word and learn more with a knowledgeable leader, but you can’t assume that every kid at your youth group is interested in that (YET). Again, think of the kids in the corners. It’s definitely important to have Bible study that is connected to your group and catered to your age group, but it doesn’t have to be part of the main gathering (though it certainly could be, if you learned at say, a BBQ, that the kids desperately wanted/needed something like that).

      The length of your talk/message and the amount of Scripture you use is largely dependent on the kids you have. The younger they are, the harder it is to get them to focus for more than 15 minutes or so. With the older group you mentioned, it depends on how familiar they are with the Bible. Knowing that will help you decide what is too much, and what is too little.

      Here’s a general template I use all the time with middle school ministry:

      Mixer (a game that forces them to mingle)
      Upfront (everyone is sitting down, except a few kids upfront playing the game)
      Relay (a game that puts them on teams)
      Upfront (a skit can also work well here)
      Talk (about 10-15 minutes)

      For high school or older, I tend to go with less games, and more entertainment (skits, etc.). None of those suggestions are strict guidelines. We have a reason for everything, but you don’t have to follow those templates if you feel inclined to try something else!

      Thankfully, there are a TON of great online resources out there to help you get started, but there is no substitute for open communication within your church. Your congregation, your church’s leadership team, and the Holy Spirit are your biggest assets.

      Hope this helps,


    • Brandie says

      Hey, I read your comment and thought I’d share what I found out. I began a youth ministry in my church about 1.5 years ago. Our church averages about 50-60 people Sunday mornings and we began with just 8 youth members. The original youth leader had left a while ago and the church just began shoving the youth in a closet with someone who wasn’t very interested in their well being. And the result of that was most of the youth left. They were about to shut down the whole “program” when I stepped in. I was only 19 years old, had no formal training. I couldn’t stand middle-schoolers or high-schoolers, but God changed my heart and I wouldn’t trade them for the world. The best advice I can provide is to pray a lot, know you aren’t failing just because no one “accepts Christ” the first invitation you give, remember that sometimes, you’re the only version of a parent some kids have, so discipline, love, and guidance falls on you. And it’s going to be rough, but it’s always worth it in the end. Once the kids know you care about them, their ideas and their opinions, they’ll begin opening up to you. I would definitely tell you to not plan to many activities, and don’t try to do it alone. It’s a tiring job, but it’s totally worth it! I hope God blesses you and your kids through your youth ministry!

      • Ryan Nelson says

        Hey Brandie, I just now saw your comment. Thank you for sharing. Ministry is hard but rewarding. I’m glad you stepped up to the challenge, and I pray you continue to fill this much-needed role in kids’ lives!

  5. Manasseh HABARUGIRA says

    Thank you for introducing us to a such ministry . God bless you all who make in application these 10 things.

  6. Apostle Dr. Patrick Utulu says

    The youth s are the future of the gospel and Leadership. They deserve Games attention for our own profiting. I am in agreement with the author.

  7. Sunday Yakubu says

    How can l make my youth fellowship interesting that good number of them will be coming to fellowship regularly? l have problem my youth not coming to the fellowship punctualy.

    • Onyi says

      i had that challenge at a time and i tried led me to trying to find out what makes them come late.eventually i found out their problems ranging to staying up late the night before watching T.V to not doing their chores timely in the morning and it led us to Time Management discussions and i encouraged them and i don’t have to scold anymore because they have improved.They are much more punctual now.we just have a few teens who come a bit late every now and then.
      i would advice that you try to find out why the do not come on time and go from there.
      A lot of times people tend to judge them without hearing them out.
      Hope this helps

  8. Dahlia Reid says

    Thank you for sharing. Just sharing my own learnt behavior:
    Keep expectations reasonable; Keep promises; and Make yourself available

  9. says

    I have problems in leading and motivating girls in my youth specially those who are around my age. There is no girl in my youth who has a leaders quality to whome we can give the responsibility of handling girls. My pastor is unmarried.

    What I have seen is that girls are looking for attention. And if I give them attention and lot of my time in motivating them trying to make them a leader, their parents starts thinking someting fishy is going between us. Its not only the parents thoughts but also many peoples thoughts.
    I have even made my good body language, the way of talking has also changed. I talk to them giving respect trying to show no sign of attraction.

    Is this the problem that I am a boy and they are the girls? No girl to handel girls!!!
    Do we have to be like brothers and sisters in the church as well as outside the church?
    Is there something not effective with friendship but effective with brother sister relationship?

    i will be interested in knowing what you have to say

  10. says

    Hi Trevor. I can totally understand the struggle. It's a clash between the ideal and the real. Ideally, yes, you could lead girls just as well as you lead boys. But the reality is there are too many other things going on there. In Young Life, we protect ourselves from situations that could create the perception of sin, even if we are confident no sin is occurring. A parent believing that you are acting inappropriately as a leader can be just as dangerous to your ministry as actual sin. There are also countless examples of innocent relationships which over time become inappropriate. I think the biggest danger is that as a leader speaking wisdom into a kid's life, you are in a very real and unavoidable sense developing an emotional intimacy. Between a man and a teenage guy, this feels more like a brother or father-son relationship (which many kids these days don't have), but between a man and a teenage girl, the closest context they may have is with a boyfriend. There should be trust between a kid and a youth leader, but that trust can quickly become dangerous if young girls confide in you and share parts of their lives they share with no one else.

    In Young Life, we have a very strict "no guys leading girls or girls leading guys" policy because there are simply too many traps. Some of those traps are the dangers this emotional intimacy creates, some are the dangers of how people perceive the relationship. We even extend this policy to giving rides home (a guy can only drive a girl home if there is a boy in the car too, but you always drop off the girl first) because we never want a male leader alone with a female kid or a female leader alone with a male kid. All it takes is a kid making a joke to sabotage the repoire you've built within your community. It also helps to put yourself in the parents shoes—especially if they don't know you.

    In an ideal world, it wouldn't matter. Unfortunately, we don't live in an ideal world, and I'd encourage you to try to invite Godly moms or women in your church into leading—even if all they can do is occasionally meet one on one with a girl. Hopefully, this is something you can talk more about with your pastor. It's a conversation worth having.

  11. says

    I'm not totally sure what you're asking, but I'll give it a shot.

    You definitely need both leaders and members. Someone has to model/demonstrate/teach about fellowship because it's not something kids just inherently know how to do. My high school guys are still learning how to really share their lives with each other, and as their leader I get to create opportunities for that to happen in healthy ways.

    As for members, numbers aren't what's important. The number of kids that come to events is not an indicator of the number of disciples your ministry produces. Each leader can only truly invest in a handful of kids lives at a time. Teaching a large group is valuable, but to apply that teaching to their lives and help them interact with Scripture, you have to personally invest in them.

    1 Thessalonians 2:8 says, “. . . Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well.”

    Those are just my thoughts. Let me know if I didn't answer your question. I hope this helps!

  12. Matt says

    I have an 18 year old guy in my youth group that I have built a close brother like bond with since he was in grade 9. He is living two lives and has been for a couple of years. He has his friends who love God and he enjoys hanging out with which usually involves me in their somewhere and then he has his friends he hangs out with on Friday night that he doesn’t tell anyone about because he knows we’ll assume he’s up to no good. He comes to youth and church and is on the worship team but he has no desire to work on the sin in his life and he wants the best of both worlds. When he hangs out with the God loving friends and myself outside of youth group, he often will talk inappropriately trying to get negative attention even though I try to give him positive attention all the time. I recently told him that I love him a ton and will always be here when he needs anything, but because he doesn’t seem to care about the choices he makes nor the advice I offer as his mentor, I’ve concluded he just wants me to be a friend who accepts him for the choices he makes even if I can see that its negatively affecting him instead of being his mentor. I told him that I don’t want to be around him and watch and listen to the garbage flowing out of him any longer but I love him and will always be here if he can set that life aside. I felt like I was enabling him to live the two lifestyles around me and if he doesn’t care about the sin, what good can I do for him at this point in his life. It’s the hardest decision I’ve ever made and I am really on the fence about it. I don’t want him to stop attending church or youth or worship because of it, but his faith seems to be built around going through the motions anyways so I don’t see him applying anything he’s hearing or seeing that’s of God. Any advice or confirmation would be great. It’s wearing on my heart and mind big time. Some scriptures I’ll come across will make feel like I’m doing what God wants and other scriptures will make me feel like I just made a big mistake.

    • Ryan Nelson says

      First of all, Matt, I want to make it very clear that I am not a pastor, nor do I have a degree in any form of religious studies. This is definitely a conversation you should have with your pastor and/or your own mentor. That being said, please take what I say as thoughts from a brother in Christ, not as authoritative advice.

      I was that 18 year old guy once. I grew up going to church all my life and I knew what was right, but I also had a lot of non-Christian friends who had completely different perspectives about life and morality. I didn’t always make the right choices, but I always had Christian leaders in my life who could point me to the right choices. Sometimes I blatantly went against that advice and what I knew was right, and sometimes I even enjoyed making the wrong choices. But that was not a permanent state. Sooner or later those wrong choices catch up with you, and God confirms his Word through his creation.

      Your role as a Christian and a mentor is never to make the choices for your disciples—you just keep pointing to the right ones, and keep pointing to Jesus. That can be incredibly frustrating when someone you’re pouring into keeps making the wrong choices, but God is sovereign, and he will at some point in this person’s life show him the error of his choices in ways you never could as a human. Remember that Jesus’ disciples made the wrong choices sometimes too. The difference, which you are aware of, is that they continued to follow Jesus, even when they screwed up. They didn’t continue on in sin after Jesus revealed their mistakes to them.

      Think too, about the kids he is hanging out with. How many Christians do they have in their lives? How many people are pointing them to Jesus? As you pour into this guy through the overflow of Jesus in you, you could very well be affecting them too. They probably have much further to go than he does (and sounds like he has a ways to go too), but every tiny step towards Christ is a victory. Our role as Christians is not to protect our faith in our own little bubble within the church: we are ambassadors for Christ (2 Corinthians 5:20). We enter into this broken world and reflect the one that’s not.

      You are doing the right thing by continuing to pursue truth yourself—reading Scripture, praying (I hope), and talking to other believers (letting iron sharpen iron—Proverbs 27:17). Remember that you did not make a permanent decision. You did, however, offer him a conditional relationship. I believe you did it out of love, not anger or frustration, but I do think you should consider being willing to be vulnerable and admit that it may have been wrong. If you decide that it was wrong, that’s okay. You haven’t burned this bridge.

      Christians should always have non-Christians in their lives (if they don’t, who are they spreading the gospel to?). Those friends may very well be relationships God designed into this young man’s life for him to reach—or to help him recognize the truth of God’s promises, his Word, and the brokenness of this world.

      If you were calling him out for his behavior, you were not enabling him. As I understand it, you were continually presenting him with a choice, and he continually made the wrong choice. Your decision to stop mentoring him until he makes the right choice could actually be very connected to what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 5:5, when a Christian chooses to live in sin. I hope to unpack that verse more in an upcoming post.

      All that being said, I strongly recommend you have this conversation with a Christian mentor who knows you, your relationship to this kid, and the situation a lot better than me.

      I think you’ll find this post about the relationship between Christianity and culture to be pretty related to what we’re talking about here:

      God bless.

  13. says

    Mason Miller I hope it's helpful. We should reform the church by the standard of Scripture. The building is a mere circumstance of worship. "Youth leaders" are part of its substance. Reformed churches hold to the regulative principle. Believers who reject it probably won't sympathize with my concerns on this. There is no better way to evangelize and disciple youth than a well-ordered biblical church and a well-ordered biblical family. The apostolic churches were adult-oriented as any study of the NT will show. They evangelized effectively and faithfully passed the gospel torch to the next generation.

  14. Mary Danson says

    This year is my first year of being a Youth Leader. And I’m am not too sure as to why God had chose me to become a Leader? Also what can I offer Him?

    Really need your help…

    • Ryan Nelson says

      Hi Mary. Do you have someone you can consider a “mentor”, or a pastor who is working with you?

      As far as what you can offer him, I think the answer is simply, yourself. You can offer him your hands and feet to be with kids and do what needs to be done. You can offer your ears to listen as kids share about themselves. Your eyes to see their hurts. And your mouth to speak from experience, love, and God’s wisdom.

  15. grace.alone says

    These are simply practical things to know yet I believe with the divine intervention of God the Holy Spirit will create great impact in the lives of youth. May God continually bless this ministry.

  16. says

    This is something that all Youth Leaders and Clergy should consider reading. They have covered some areas that most adults have either forgotten or hadn't considered important. Nice article.

  17. says

    Mr Chris Salamone, who has formerly served as a faculty member at Loyola University Chicago School of Law and the National Institute of Trial Advocacy, and served as a leadership curriculum adviser at The University of Central Oklahoma is CEO of Lead America which is most respected youth leadership organizations with an unwavering commitment to quality and excellence in our academic offerings . Chris Salamone works to improve the lives of young people around the world through his many philanthropic endeavors. Mission is to ‘inspire and empower our young people to achieve their full potential and instill in them a sense of purpose, integrity, self confidence, and personal responsibility.’ This is achieved through engaging students (high school for most programs and middle school for a few) in conferences that combine challenging academics with hands-on experiential learning.

  18. says

    Hi Chuky. How well do you know these kids? In order to know the best way to effectively communicate the gospel to them, you have to know where they're at and what they think.

    They could be disinterested because they've “heard it all before” (meaning they need help seeing the Bible with fresh eyes), because they don’t understand it (we can't talk to non-Christians as if they are already Christians), because their parents are making them come, or because of something else.

    Generally speaking, the less we as leaders connect the Bible to kids’ lives, the less they feel like it applies to them. The better we know our kids, the better we can connect the Bible to their lives.

    I hope this helps?

  19. ANNIE OMONIYI says

    I agree to all points mentioned and thank God I am a youth leader in my church and I love the Lord with all my heart and love kids/youth. Mentoring is one thing I need in my life to keep me going so that I will not burnout. Presently, that is how I feel.
    You have to show yourself friendly to these kids and be open/transparent to them as you work with them. Tell them the truth at all times in love and let them know your care. Be ready to spend and be spent for the course of the Gospel. This is a great opportunity and privilege the Lord has given us as youth leaders.
    Respect is another virtue we need among volunteers working with our kids/youths.
    Proper screening of volunteers who want to be part of the team, so as to avoid incidents.
    Youth leaders must know how to dress properly as to inspire our kids/youths to learn to dress in a way that honors and glorifying to the Lord. COVER YOUR NAKEDNESS.

  20. Imran Abubakar says

    Bravo!!! to this wonderful information and I wishes my fellow youth will make best use of it so as tools for sustainable development in our immediate community as well as the entire country at large.

  21. Maduka Ifeanyi Miracle says

    Gud evening all,am hapy to be in this platform,that is full of grace and truth.Am the new youth leader in my church and we jst start our youth fellowship bt there is something is notice they dnt like coming to fellowship bt i want them to grow up and become whom God has called us to be and empower others in the environment.What should i do inorder to help them and help the church as well

  22. Panger Jamir says

    How should I find a mentor? It may sound awkward but I really want to know what you hav to say, please, anyone…

    • Ryan Nelson says

      If you don’t already have a connection to someone who could become a mentor if you asked them, I’d encourage you to talk to your pastor or the director/leader of the ministry you volunteer with.


    Am so grateful for these wonder advice on these platform, Took to the advice and it working for me, But i will appreciate the on how i can continue to encourage the youths in my church to keep attending the meeting hole heatedly with out the looking for what to be use to encourage the to come e.g Refreshment

  24. says

    I’m thankful to God for me to see this website teaching me all about youth i don’t mind what their ages may be. My concern is, my youth in my church are well gifted in singing but,apart from that, they don’t want to participate in any other activities in the church. TODAY God spoke to me to have a symposium with them that is how I came across this website and I got some important ways to speak to them. Please email me if I can get some other ways to teach them more.

  25. Isai says

    Im just 16 years old amd one day the pastor called me infront of the church and ask me if i wanted to become a youth leader i didnt want to say no infront of people so i decided to say yes, but now in my mind i feel like im not ready or im going to mess uo so many time i dont know what to do


    • Ryan Nelson says

      Isai, I’m sorry you felt pressured into a leadership role you weren’t ready for. Can you meet with this pastor individually? You may feel as though you’ve made this commitment and you can’t let people know how you feel about it, but it is best for you and your church that you tell them what you’ve just said here. Your pastor may have had good intentions for publicly affirming your potential, but that wasn’t fair to put you on the spot before you’d ever had a conversation about it.

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