4 Tips for Youth Leaders from Youth Leaders - Dare 2 Share
Helping youth leaders empower
students to reach their world.
Helping youth leaders empower
students to reach their world.

4 Tips for Youth Leaders from Youth Leaders

Youth ministry veterans tell what they've learned in the trenches.



Recently we invited a few longtime youth leaders—Tyree, Pauline, and Eric—to join Greg Stier on his podcast. Toward the end of the episode he asked them: “What’s one piece of advice you would give to youth leaders?”  

Their answers were so good that we wanted to share them with you here. 

1. Pray. 

Tyree thought prayer should be a given for youth leaders, but Greg pointed out that often, sadly, it isn’t. It’s easy to neglect time in prayer among all the demands of your week, and yet prayer is such a vital part of the youth ministry calling. Jesus Himself wanted to make sure we prioritized prayer.  

And as He taught them, He said, “Is it not written: ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations’?”  

Mark 11:17

To easily inject some new energy into your prayer life, try one of the super-simple ways explained in this article.  

2. Join the Gospel Advancing Ministry Facebook group. 

There are lots of groups youth leaders could join, but the Gospel Advancing Facebook group is unique, Tyree said. He mentioned that in other groups you might learn how to play a lot of really cool games, but when your students graduate, they won’t know how to share the Gospel or do a Bible study with the person in their dorm room. He described this group of youth workers as being about the grind. They’re really not about themselves, he explained, but more about involving students and leaders. He also mentioned that this group helps you know that you’re not alone and there’s a community out there to cheer you on. 

3. Don’t do it alone. 

Pauline gave the exhortation to find others to join you in this journey. Whether you pull one person aside or join a network of people who are willing to implement the 7 Values of a Gospel Advancing ministry, don’t do it alone. Do it with another youth pastor or youth leader from a different church, or simply get a couple of people at your church to support you. There are others who want to join in the journey. It doesn’t matter if you’re the only church in the county or if  you’re one of several within a small town. There’s somebody who’s willing to go with you in this way of ministry, so go with the goers. 

4. Be patient.  

Eric encouraged youth leaders to expect difficulty but persevere through it, because the growth is coming. People—whether church leadership, volunteers, students, or even parents—need time to adjust to Gospel Advancing. They often have a different expectation or approach. Pray through the trials, be patient, expect resistance, but keep the vision in mind of what it means to enable, equip, and unleash your students to share the Gospel in your community—and hold tight to that. It’s worth it. 

Greg agreed and added that Gospel Advancing is not a sprint—it’s a marathon. It’s not just a program that you do and then you’re done with it. It often involves changing a ministry’s culture, which requires tearing down strongholds, which takes prayer, which means you’re going to get spiritual resistance from Satan. Some parents may not like where you’re going. Some teenagers may not like where you’re going either, but you’re the youth leader. So, lead the way, in the power of the Holy Spirit, and do it a step at a time. 

Want more words of wisdom? Download the free Gospelize Your Youth Ministry e-book for more stories and advice from youth leaders and Greg Stier. It’s designed for you to take your whole team through it, using the discussion questions at the end of each chapter to process through how the Gospel Advancing philosophies can work in your own ministry context.  

To listen to the full podcast conversation between Greg, Tyree, Pauline, and Eric, click here.  

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