In 2018 we structured our Student Ministry for the better. We made our vision for Student Ministry to glorify God in all that we do. We accomplished this by focusing our meetings on three meeting themes: Becoming like Christ through relevant teaching, Belonging in Community, and Blessing others through outreach initiatives. Turning the themes into goals has resulted in us seeing God’s handiwork in numerous ways.
Becoming like Christ
Since September, students have been learning about Jesus through the gospel of John. We have discovered the beauty of Christ and what that means to us and the rest of the world. It has been fascinating to learn about the Person who changed the world and who is changing our lives. We learned how Christ is the central figure in all that we do and become. That is why, as Student Ministry, it was important that we made Christ the foundation of all that we did and learned in 2018.
Belonging in Community
On Wednesdays, we gathered at my house as a student ministry body to dig deeper into the Bible. We also fellowshipped with one another to strengthen each other in Christ. We enjoyed extra activities such as carving pumpkins, making and eating caramel apples, and decorating gingerbread houses. Our time together on Wednesdays has created a bond of good memories between the students.
Our outreach initiatives have probably been the most popular amongst the students. I am amazed to see how much the students desire to reach the lost for Christ. The students began the outreach ministry in September by deciding what events they would host in the coming months to reach teenagers in the Chaska community. In October, the students humbled themselves and prayed to God to bless their outreach activities.
Our first outreach in November was a basketball event where nine teenagers (along with Westbrook students) played basketball at the Chaska Community Center. They heard the gospel and that Westbrook Church cares about them. Our second outreach, a Christmas Party, was also a success, as new and old youth group members and a guest enjoyed the festivities. The guest has since expressed interest in joining the youth group for Wednesday and Sunday meetings.
As a way to equip our students for these outreach events, guest speakers presented to us on one Wednesday each month. In 2018 we heard from a resident from an area we are ministering in, a police officer, a representative from a mental health crisis unit, and a member of a homeless young adult organization. Each of these people brought significant practical information that helped us at our Christ-centered outreach events.
As more preparation for the outreach events, the high school students (grades 9-12) have been learning how to connect with others of different faith. In 2018 we visited an Islamic mosque and Jewish synagogue. The high school students acquired real-life experience as they interacted, asked questions, and became acquainted with those who God desires to reach.
We have had a wonderful year so far and I am looking forward to seeing God move in miraculous ways as we BECOME like Christ, BELONG in Community and BLESS others in the new year!