Thanks Ben and Jason for this great advice for students to follow up from ONE. Keep reading below for the advice for leaders.
Here’s what Ben & Jason told students:
O – Observations – Notice what you noticed from the ONE Conference and take action. What did you connect with and how can you follow up?
N – Next – What comes next? Taking the next steps. Is there something you need to change in your life?
E – Expect great things – Ephesians 3:20-21 – Expect God to do more in you and through you. You’ve entered boundless opportunities with God. God will be with you in everything, even in the difficult times. And expect great things for ONE 2019.
Now here are 7 things LEADERS can do to follow up with youth who responded to a God stirring during ONE
1. Check-in – Check-in what actually was going on in their mind and heart, don’t assume you know. Ask good questions like – What was God stirring in your heart? What made you want to respond? Was this the first time you responded in this way or tell me about other times? Did God highlight something in particular to you during the response? Honour whatever it was God was stirring. Don’t discredit it, the student was seeking to obey whatever God was doing in them – that is always a good thing! Honour and celebrate whether it was them responding for the first time to surrendering the life to Christ, surrendering a new area of their life, recommitting themselves to Jesus or some other Kingdom stirring and step. Help them know it was real and God is faithful and will continue the good work He started in them in that moment.
2. Let them tell their story & celebrate – Give them an opportunity to tell their story to others in the right setting for them and where others will be excited for them. Find a way to celebrate it! It may mean helping them to share their story at youth group, in a Christian group at school, on social media (TBT), in the wider church etc.
3. Include parents – Help students find a way to share with their parents what God was and is stirring in their life. Parents want to be included! Whether the parents are Christian and will be very excited or parents aren’t Christian and wouldn’t be quite sure how to respond – Parents still want to know & wonder what happened to their kid. Encourage students to share with their parents and help them think through how they can bring it up with their parents.
4. Connect to mentors – Get this student connected to a mentor who is older than them and more mature in the faith. Their mentor should be someone that can help them know how to take the next growth steps (see #5) in their faith journey.
5. Next steps – Help them take the next step that will lead to further growth in their relationship with God and Kingdom living. It could be helping them: join a small group, get YouVersion on their phone and starting to read the Bible, start to come to Weekend services at a church, take on leading a small group themselves, exploring baptism, read a book about the spiritual disciplines and start practicing them together, starting an initiative to share their faith in word and deed etc. Help the student find a mentor that will be a real cheerleader in their next step of faith.
6. Get (or Keep) them connected – Help them know they really are not alone, God by His Spirit is with them always and they have a worldwide family of brothers and sisters in Christ. Connect them to a circle of other believers where they can belong and see Christians living out their faith, praying together, growing together, and serving together. This could be through a group of peers in a youth group, in a small group, a group on a school campus, a group that connected at ONE and wants to keep connecting, an inter-generational group at the church, a serving group at the church etc. Everyone needs a community of Christians around them to help them grow. Everyone needs a circle. Make sure they get connected to a circle within 2 months or less of their response to Christ.
7. Get them involved – Get them involved in joining God’s mission. Christianity isn’t passive. One of the best ways to create in them the desire to keep growing in their faith is to have them join in serving the world, in word and deed, with God’s good news. Get them involved in joining God’s work in our neighbourhoods – locally or globally.
Stellar follow-up helps it stick.
Thanks so much for journeying with your students towards Jesus!
We are so thankful for all the investments you are making.
So excited by the 2388 people that were at ONE now back in their neighbourhoods, schools, workplaces, churches… Keep shining!