One of the reasons I blog here is to be to others what I wish someone was to me when I started. One of the things that would have helped me when I started was knowing where to start. So this post is sort of beginners toolbox for anyone who is new, just starting or about to start in kids or youth ministry. Hope these are helpful to you or to someone you know.
1. Producteev – You need a to-do app you can trust that has the flexibility, that is collaborative and free. Preducteev does that all and some.
2. Read Beat the Clock – Drucker said it best.
Everything requires time. It is the one truly universal condition. All work takes place in time and uses up time. Yet most people take for granted this unique, irreplaceable, and necessary resource. Nothing else, perhaps, distinguishes effective executives as much as their tender loving care of time.
Jim Wideman’s book on time is a must read for every new kids pastor.
(to see the rest select “continue reading” below)
3. Listen to Preaching Christ in Postmodern world iTunes U
Tim Keller and Edmund Clowney together taught a class called ‘Preaching Christ in a Post Modern World’, and is now on iTunes as part of Reformed Theological Seminary Worldwide.
You can find the handouts for this course on Google Docs
This is an essential listen as it helps to frame your ability to see Christ in all of Scripture and helps you to portray that to kids.
4. Read Show them Jesus. In this book Jack Klumpenhower does an excellent job of showing the need for teaching kids the Gospel along with practical helps on how to do this more effectively.
5. Read Stretch – Another book by my friend Jim Wideman this one deals with structuring your ministry for growth.
6. Read Three Signs of a miserable job – This is one of the few books I read every year because it reminds me of how to best lead your team. Every leader has to help their team through the three signs 1. anonymity – people want to know that matter to you more than what they do for you. 2. Irrelevance – people won’t do well at their jobs until they know who their work matters to. 3.Immesurement – People want to know if they are winning. Help them keep score.
7. Fill out a report weekly – Filling out a weekly report is a great way to help you stay focussed ans well as keep you accountable for your time to your boss.
8. Lead Small – If you do Large Group/Small group style of kids church you must read this book. Simple practical and useful.
9. Read Whats Best Next – This book was fantastic because it addressed productivity from the standpoint of it’s ultimate purpose. Be efficient with problems and processes so you can be patient with people.
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10. Start tracking your time and ID time wasters – you need to use a calendar to track your time. If you don’t know where your time goes you will not be able to ask the two most important questions in time creation. What am I doing that someone else can do? and What am I doing that I need to stop doing?
11. Follow #kidmin and join CMConnect and I Love Kidmin on Facebook – start watching what questions people are asking and how others are answering.
12. Every time you meet with your boss have at least one question ready for him.
13. Get a notebook and keep track of things to fix that week. Walk around making a list of things you need to fix before next Sunday. I use a small moleskin so people don’t think I am surfing the web or texting friends. Paper is old school and allows you to stay engaged.
14. Fabulous Reinvention of Sunday school. Best book ever on large group goodness for kids church.
15. Fill out a Pep test – Know your personality. – Pep is quick simple test to discover what your strengths and weakness are. You can’t work on yourself and work where how you work best without knowing how you tick.
16. Read Volunteers that Stick – Another great book by Jim Wideman that is the best book on recruiting, training and releasing volunteers.
17. Don’t wait for you boss to check in with you proactively call him/her at least once a week to check in.
18. Know you pastors heart. You are not leading a department you are building a church for God’s glory not yours.
If you are looking for a sample of my weekly report you can download it along with an older version of our flow chart and some job descriptions to get you started.