1. Be a professional.- As you approach a school make sure you dress and act professionally. This is not the time to try and be hip, funny or cool. Because at the end of the day a school is a business, or at least they try to run themselves like one. So if you are trying to get a presence on a campus you need to respect that and act professionally. This is especially true if you are going to go to campus lunches. While this is not always the most effective form of ministry anymore, if you do choose to visit your students on campus make sure you dress appropriately, follow their guidelines, and act respectfully. Do not start a food fight, disturb the peace, or mess with people's food, regardless of how much attention you might get for it or how funny you think it is.
2. Serve the school.- This does not need to be all about you getting attention or being the center of things. If that opportunity comes take it, but the best first step, and honestly the best attitude to have in general, is to serve the school. One way to do this is to call the principal or contact the athletic or band booster clubs, and see what help is needed. Then you provide the resources and volunteers that are needed. Or maybe you come up with an idea of something that might be a huge help, like hosting extra after school tutoring and providing pizza. Then if they like your idea you run it and take advantage of an incredible new and outside the box ministry opportunity.
3. Equip and unleash your students.- There are many ways to reach a school campus, but if you want to see massive change and revival break out, you will have to equip and unleash your students to reach their campuses. Because not only will it mean more when a student reaches out to one of their lost peers, but there is also much work to be done. So how much more effective would our ministries be if we sent an army of people out to do ministry in a place where they already have relationships and influence and see those people for 8 hours a day, five days a week? I am telling you, if you want to see change in your schools and your communities send out your students. And with that, pray for them, train them, encourage them, cast the vision for them, listen to their hurts, needs and ideas along the way, partner with teachers on campuses who can support them, and equip them with the resources they need along the way. Honestly, the best resource they have is sharing their life and the truth of scripture with others. But sometimes other tools can come in handy. For example, our custom youth ministry app was designed with this specific purpose in mind. To give students a tools so they can be discipled and easily turn around and reach their campuses and disciple their friends. But whatever it is you use, just make sure that sending your students out to do ministry is a priority.
Please hear me. I understand that as I write this we all face different struggles when it comes to school. For some of you most of your deacon board and Sunday School teachers are coaches, teachers, principals, or maybe even on the school board. And for you doing ministry in a school is no problem. For others of you the school has completely shunned the church and so it is more of a battle for you and more of a risk for your students. But regardless of where you are, God has given us the same calling, to reach this generation for Him and to equip and empower our students to do this work as well. Therefore we must step up and face all challenges to make sure that this work is completed and a big part of this is reaching campuses. Hopefully these tips will help you in this process, and if you have any there ideas about how those of us in youth ministry can reach to work campuses please feel free to share.
Every Kid Matters,