Remember when you first started serving in children's ministry? You were hungry to learn and grow. Whether it was last year or 20 years ago, you read books, attended conferences, subscribed to children's ministry magazines and reached out to other children's ministry leaders, so you could pick their brains.
You were very aware that you had a lot to learn, weren't you? And that awareness kept you pursuing knowledge and experience.
Fast forward to now ... today. Do you still have that same hunger to grow and become a better children's ministry leader? Are you still aware that you have a lot to learn? Are you still reaching out to other leaders and learning from them? Are you still reading, listening and attending opportunities to grow?
Hopefully the answer is "yes." Why? Because the best leaders are lifelong learners. Instead of being totally focused on everything they do know, they are aware of what they don't know or have not discovered yet.
Do you have your personal leadership in neutral? Coasting along. Content with your current leadership abilities?
I was meditating on this verse this morning.
"Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment" (1 Pet. 2:2, NLT).
Which lead me to ask myself these questions.
Do I still crave spiritual growth?
Do I realize I still have a lot to learn?
As a baby cries out to be fed, do I cry out to God to fill me with His wisdom and anointing?
When we reach the point where we think we know it all, we become close-minded and disregard new ideas and insights. And when that happens, our personal growth stalls.
The fact that you are reading this says you still want to grow. To be honest, one of the reasons I am typing this right now is because it is forcing me to grow and be stretched. If you are going to grow and be a lifetime learner, then you must constantly be looking for opportunities to grow and become a better leader.
When was the last time you read a book that helped you grow as a leader?
When was the last time you attended a conference?
When was the last time you called another leader and asked them questions?
When was the last time you listened to a podcast for the purpose of getting better?
When was the last time you changed your mind about something because you became aware of a different approach?
When was the last time you listened and learned from a leader who has less experience than you?
Have you shifted into neutral? If so, your momentum as a leader will soon slow down to a crawl and eventually stop moving forward all together.
I want to challenge you to shift back into drive. God still has much for you to learn. Your best days of ministry are ahead if you are willing to focus on improving as a leader.
The best leaders are lifelong learners.
Dale Hudson has been in children's ministry for over 27 years. He is the director of children's ministry at Christ Fellowship Church in south Florida. Christ Fellowship has nine campuses and ministers to over 25,000 people on weekends. Dale leads a children's ministry staff team of over 70 and a volunteer team of over 2,600. He has authored 100 Best Ideas to Turbocharge Your Children's Ministry, 100 Best Ideas to Turbocharge Your Preschool Ministry, Children's Ministry in the 21st Century, Sunday School That Works, the churchleaders.com Top 100 book, and If Disney Ran Your Children's Ministry. You can find more of his helpful resources at relevantchildrensministry.com or buildingchildrensministry.com.
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