When it comes to student ministry, some of the most valuable people on your team are the small group leaders and adult volunteers directly serving your students each week. You couldn’t do what you do without them, and, because of that, you want to do your best to love them well while they’re with you. It’s your job to do what you can to serve and support them to succeed.
So how can you do that? Check out a five quick thoughts from our dedicated and servant-hearted Intern Director, Larissa Capps, on how you can best serve your leaders.
5 Ways to Serve Your Small Group Leaders
- Be personable.
Just as your leaders are one of your most valuable resources, you in turn are one of theirs! It’s so important to be personable and available to your leaders while they’re serving with you. You are the one they’re going to turn to for advice, direction, encouragement and prayer, but they’re only going to do that if you’ve made a point to be friendly and help them get comfortable with you beforehand. Simply being personable and trying to know your leaders will go a long way in pouring into and developing them as they serve.
- Be honest.
While honest sometimes isn’t the easiest, it’s so important for you to always be respectfully honest with your leaders. Honesty has the power to open hardened hearts, create trust and form the foundation of a relationship. Try being honest about both the good and the bad with your leaders. Not sure where to start? Determine their strengths and weaknesses and speak honestly with them about both, highlighting and encouraging their strengths while guiding and building them up in their weaknesses. Practice what you preach and try this exercise on yourself and then be honest about your own experience with your leaders. Your transparency will open the door for honest conversation and camaraderie.
- Anticipate conflict.
When it comes to working with other people, conflict is inevitable. We’re all human, we all make mistakes, and we’re all bound to find ourselves in conflict at some point along the way. But before you panic, trust me when I tell you that not all conflict is bad. In fact, when facilitated and approached appropriately, conflict can actually be healthy! Pray through your approach to conflicts with your leaders and approach them in love and encouragement rather than anger or defensiveness. Most of the time, you’ll be surprised by the way addressing and resolving conflict can facilitate growth in the hearts of your leaders.
- Show grace.
Gosh, I can’t say it enough—grace upon grace upon grace! We must always show grace to the people we’re leading in the same way God’s grace has been so generously shown to us as we’ve served and led others. One of the best things you can do for your leaders is simply to show them grace. You cannot truly love them at their best if you aren’t willing to show them grace when they’re at their worst. That grace will go so far for your leaders because His grace is sufficient for all.
- Be a fan.
When you’re in a position to lead others, you have to be for others. Choose to champion your leaders over yourself. Celebrate their wins. Encourage them in their accomplishments. Cheer them on as they serve. It’s so important in forming a relationship—especially one of leadership—that you be genuine in your love and support of others. Be their biggest fan!
We hope these tips inspire you to serve and support you adult leaders and volunteers!
Have a great week!