"How Not to Do Youth Ministry"
When volunteering with a youth group at church and leading a small group of eighth grade girls, do not assume a girl is going to ask an irrelevant question when she raises her hand - even if history tells you that the question could be about ice cream or a pet dog.
Your girls may surprise you. One of them may have a question for you and the proper response is not to say, "What is your question about? Is it about shoelaces???" Because you will then find out that her question is about the Bible verse you just mentioned and what the reference is because she wants to look it up later.
Oh. I'm so sorry! It's Romans 8:26. Glad you're looking it up later!
My co-leader Anna and I have a great group of eighth grade girls. They have a lot of energy, they care for each other, pray for each other, and are there on Wednesday nights to have deep discussions. And have fun as well. One of the girls has a mom recently diagnosed with cancer. Another girl has ongoing medical problems. More than one has a troubled family background yet each one shows up cheerful, energetic and willing to dive in to answer discussion questions and share prayer requests. They're such an encouragement to me each week. I've not been there 100% the past few weeks - being sick and then having a whirling mind due to too much cough medicine in my system.... and they welcomed me back with open arms last night!
This Saturday is a battle of the bands and A, in the lower right corner of the photo above, will be featured at the piano while singing songs she's written. I cannot wait to hear her sing!
So now you know how I spend my Wednesday nights! I work with a great team of junior high leaders. Our preparation meetings are filled with laughter and with planning. Then we pile out of the classroom and into the gym where we play basketball, mingle with those who hang out on the side of the gym, then play one big group game - which changes every week. Gotta say those nights are the highlight of my week!