One of the privileges I have is to work with students and help develop their leadership skill and potential. I decided that if I really cared about the next generation, my influence would have to be felt beyond the Sunday morning sermon. I needed to get face to face with them and let my vision and values align together. If I was to have any influence, face time would need to be a priority. Since beginning this, here are some observations I’ve made over the last several weeks of spending time with teenagers:
Students genuinely want to be led. They desire someone who will make the time investment in their lives. As spiritual leaders, we do not get the option of sitting in the stands, observing the players on the field and criticizing how the game is being played. If we are not investing ourselves in others, we are missing a huge opportunity to impact the next generation. Lesson? Make the investment now!
Students genuinely want to learn how to effectively lead. We gave simple guidelines to 20 specific teens: Read the assigned material, be on time, be willing to take correction, be accountable and teach the material to other students. They raised the bar high in preparation and presentation. They have begun to see that leadership is more than a title or the latest fun activity. They are beginning to grasp principles of leadership and applying those principles to their own lives. Lesson? Students want to learn how to lead so raise the bar high now!
- Students genuinely have significant giftings that cannot wait to utilized. We miss huge opportunities for skills to be honed when we wait until students are full-fledged adults to release their capabilities. There are large numbers of students who are being told to wait their turn when in fact their turn is now. Those of us who are older must let go of the reins of control, take some leadership risks and let the next generation speak and watch fresh anointing come forth into this present culture. Lesson? Take a risk and release the next generation into their God given passions now!
There is a fresh wind of God’s Spirit blowing on this present generation. Let’s facilitate and guide what the Lord is doing, allow them to lead and watch the impossible take place as we see grace and maturity change this culture for God’s glory. Lesson? Do it now for all generations!