5 Ways to Get Involved with Your School Ministry

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I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was starting a series on starting a ministry at your school. But before we get into those details, I want to address one thing: how to get involved if your school already has an existing ministry. If there’s a ministry at your school that’s going strong or even a fledgling group that’s just starting up, and you want to support it rather than trying to start your own, here’s how!

1. Attend the meetings consistently.

Start going to the meetings as consistently as you can, if you don’t already. This will show the leaders your commitment and dedication, and help you understand the ministry and what it stands for. Learn more about it: how did it get started? How long has it been around? How has it evolved and changed over the years?

2. Ask how you can get involved.

Once you’re more familiar with the ministry and you know you want to get involved, it’s as simple as this: mention to the leadership that you’re interested in helping it, and ask how you can get involved. Once they know you’re willing, opportunities will start to come your way.

Be willing to start small. Provide snacks, help set up and clean up, etc. even if you aren’t officially a leader yet. It’s the people who are constantly around and helping that the leaders will remember when they choose people to add to their team.

3. Find ways to really use your gifts to add to the ministry.

Figure out your unique strengths and skills as a leader, and then use those in conjunction with the other leaders’ differing strengths to create a strong team. Find the things that you’re really good at and pour yourself into doing those things for the ministry.

4. If there are things you don’t like about the ministry, take initiative and work to improve them.

This is always better than complaining! If, as you start to get more involved, you realize things about the ministry that you don’t like, don’t gossip or complain, and don’t give up hope. You can do something about it. Talk to the other leaders, or the adults involved, and make the changes that will make the ministry better.

5. Don’t be afraid to take on leadership responsibilities that challenge you or make you feel uncomfortable.

As you get more involved, step outside your comfort zone, and be willing to try new things and learn new skills. Worst-case scenario, it doesn’t work out, and you step back and let someone else try – or you might discover something you are good at that you never realized before. Use your leadership position as an opportunity for learning and growth.

Those are just a few ideas for getting involved with an existing ministry at your school. Next, we’ll get into the step-by-step for starting a ministry from scratch, from finding leaders to planning meetings to promoting your events. I’m looking forward to it, and I hope you are too!

love, grace

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Why Are School Ministries Important? (+My Experience)

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Today, I’m announcing a new series that will continue off and on for the next few months: how to start a Christian club/ministry group at your school! This will be specifically more geared toward high school students, since that’s where I have experience, but can also apply to college. We’ll dig into discovering your mission, finding leaders, how to promote yourself, dealing with secular administrations, and more!

I was involved with a Christian club at my public high school for all four years, three of those as a leader. It was a pretty small club, although the size fluctuated back and forth a bit during my time there, and we met once a week to play games, do a Bible study, and pray together. As a leader, I was responsible for teaching the Bible study every so often, as well as a variety of other responsibilities that changed and increased as the years went by, finally being completely in charge in my senior year.

I have a lot of thoughts and experience in this area, and I can’t wait to share them with you! If you have questions as we go along, please share in the comments, as I’d love to do a question-and-answer post at the end.

Before we get started, I want to touch on one fundamental thing: why are these school ministries important? What is their purpose and place in a secular educational environment?

They can serve several different purposes. Christian clubs can be more outreach-focused, involved in serving and getting to know unbelievers and sharing the gospel with them. They can also be more fellowship-focused (which is what my experience was), reaching out to believers in the public school system and providing a place where they can meet other Christians and be encouraged and strengthened in their faith.

Either way, Christian clubs and ministries in public schools are a wonderful way to fulfill the Great Commission. They provide a beam of light in places that are often otherwise very dark, and their simple presence in a public school is a silent message to the world.

As a teenager, you might feel like there isn’t much you can do to share the gospel right now, especially in the loudness of today’s world. But getting involved with a ministry group at your school is a great way to begin! And if there isn’t already a group at your school, why not take a leap and start one yourself? There are almost always Christians hiding in the woodwork who will be willing to support you. Stop hiding, and become a presence in your school. The rest of this series will tell you how.

Does your school have a Christian ministry? If so, are you involved? If not, have you ever considered starting one? Share in the comments! 

love, grace

P.S. 4 Ways to Pray for Your School

Advice to My Freshman Self: Get Involved

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Four years ago, I entered the world of public school for the first time. There are so many things that I wish I knew then, and my hope is that by sharing those things with you, I can help you make the most of your high school experience.

First of all, get involved. 

As a freshman, I was shy, and doing new things scared me. So I didn’t.

As a senior, I really regret it. This year I’ve been finding my feet and trying more things that used to intimidate me. Volunteering at choir events. Doing Latin competitions. And so on. Every single time, I wish that I had started sooner and had more years to participate.

So my biggest advice for teens, especially middle schoolers and young high schoolers, is to get involved in something now. Don’t wait. The things that you are afraid to try? Those will often end up being your best memories of high school.

Especially if you are an introvert, don’t let fear of new social situations keep you from doing things that sound fun. You will almost never regret doing more and going places, at least to a certain extent. It’s how you will feel included, find friends, and enjoy yourself throughout your teen years.

If you’re already involved in a performing art or sport or something, make it your goal to get even more involved. Go for more days each week. Take the extra opportunities that are offered. Find ways to serve and give back to your organization.

If you go to a public school, stay up-to-date on what’s going on. Especially during your freshman year, try everything that interests you at least once. You can narrow it down later to the ones you really care about.

If you’re homeschooled or your school doesn’t have a lot of opportunities, seek them out. Take classes in your town, join a sports team, get involved with your co-op if you have one, do community theater, etc.

And in the later years of high school, once you know where your interests lie, choose a few things that you can invest in and be fully a part of. Don’t just be nominally involved. Be someone who shows up for everything, volunteers for everything, signs up for everything.

I’m not saying that you should overload yourself; you need balance, time to study and sleep and hang out with your family. But as a freshman, balance wasn’t the advice I needed. I have no problem keeping time for my own pursuits. The advice I needed was this: don’t let fear of a full schedule keep you from trying things that look interesting. You can always take a step back if you get overwhelmed.

Do the things that you’re good at. Do the things that interest you. Don’t let fear hold you back. That is how you will make friends, learn your strengths, and start to use your talents for God’s glory.

What do you think? How involved are you at your school or in your community? Which do you struggle with more: balancing your schedule or fear of getting involved? Share in the comments! 

love, grace

Read more:

Three Habits to Cultivate Now (+giveaway winner!)

Transitions: Learning to Trust God Through College Applications

7 Things I Learned at Public High School (Guest Post at Apple Trees and Pumpkin Seeds)