more-than-a-piece asked: Hey Unka! Just wanted to ask you if you have any advice about how to start up ministering to high school girls, like maybe how to go about it? What exactly to talk about and how far to go with it? Would be immensely appreciated!! Again thank you! I truly love and learn from everything you post :D
Unka Glen answered: When you’re starting a new ministry, you should do as little talking as possible, and as much listening as possible. All too often people think of ministry as one person saying smart things, and everyone else around being blown away. That’s not really how it works.
So we start with the premise that the Holy Spirit is drawing everyone to Himself, and we all feel that pull, on one level or another, but we spend a lot of our lives stuck on one obstacle or another. So ministry is all about helping people to overcome those obstacles, so that the relationship can move forward. That’s simple.
The complicated part is the obstacles themselves. If they were easy to figure out and overcome, we’d be over them already. We’ve already figured out the Bible part of all these problems, (and so have they) because that part is utterly simple. For example, if a young lady says she’s struggling with anger towards a friend who has betrayed her trust, we all know that the biblical answer is forgiveness.
So, you think, I’ll just tell her to forgive the friend, because this is, after all, the correct answer. Her response will be to tell you, “I just can’t”. She’s stuck, you see. So you think, I need a gimmick that will kind of trick her into forgiving her friend. So you invent some brilliant “exercise” that will do the job. And then that will fail, and then you’ll realize, hey, we never really spent any time talking about the actual obstacle itself.
We need to investigate what makes it hard to forgive someone. That means you don’t need to think of the most amazing lesson on forgiveness (she already knows she needs to forgive her friend, I mean, c’mon), what you need to think of are good questions that are designed to get her to work through this obstacle, and find her own way to the forgiveness.
I might ask questions like these:
- What does it feel like when someone lets you down?
- Why do we rehearse the anger the way we do?
- How does betrayal make us feel about ourselves?
Then, once they do the work to figure out the nature of the problem, you can come in with some verses about how, let’s say, Jesus was betrayed. And how did that make Him feel? And do we betray Jesus too? And now what do we think about forgiving this other person, knowing that Jesus forgave us when we didn’t deserve it?
You see, we’re starting with honesty, authenticity, and getting some understanding going, without judgement. We then investigate and pull apart how this problem actually works. And only then can we know what simple biblical principle needs to be applied.
When it comes to ministry, the less dependent they are on you the better. You want to teach them to break things down for themselves, ask questions of themselves, and learn how apply the Word for themselves as much as possible. You’re always doing your best ministry when you’re putting yourself out of a job.
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