How to use these Resources

Whilst hoping you don't find it too insulting to begin with 'how to use this material' because you're actually clever enough to work that out for yourself, we felt you might appreciate a bit of gentle guidance from the experience of the authors, who have all run church-based youth groups themselves and learned a lot from their mistakes. A tip. Never start with a 58 word sentence. This page contains all you need to know in order to make the most of CYFA resources.

 

Step one. You find a girl to love, no sorry that was an old song. Youth ministry is about relationships. We do one-to-lots work in order to do one-to-one work more effectively. There may be a bit more to your group than that but it's not a very important bit. Get to know your group.

 

Step two. If you simply turn up to the group clutching a copy of this material you may find a sentence such as, ‘Three weeks before the meeting you will need to…’ You should know that we do things like this so the user of the Bible-Based Resources for Youth Groups series only ever turns up unprepared once. Some preparation will be necessary.

 

You will not need a huge amount of equipment but some will be necessary. Try doing some of these things:

 

·         Speed-read the book. Finished. Good.

 

·         Plan to do two or three sessions in a row and then take a break to do something else.

 

·         Read two or three sessions ahead in a bit more detail.

 

·         Decide how much of the too-much material you are going to use.

 

You will find a piece of core-teaching in each of the sessions and then games, ice-breakers, prayer ideas, worship material, sketches and verses to add interest, quirkiness, fun and that.

 

Step three. Deliver the teaching and put everything back tidily. Then review how it went and learn.

 

In between all steps pray a lot, that the same Holy Spirit who inspired the Bible’s authors to write will inspire us to understand.

 

The sessions

Each session is divided into:

Teaching point – what we want to communicate

Group aim – what we hope your group will get out of it

Leaders’ guide – a few notes of things leaders may need to know before starting

Bible background – some commentary on the passage being studied

Starting it – ice breakers and get-into-it activities plus equipment list

Teaching it - the main teaching content plus equipment list

Doing it – some ideas for application and prayer plus equipment list

Work-out - downloadable pages to help you get over-familiar with your printer.

 

There is other material in the series

We love doing this job so much we just go on producing great material and have done for twenty years or so. We’ve studied other Bible books to see what issues they raise; we’ve studied other issues to see what the Bible has to say about them. Details here of other resources, some still available in, gasp, book-form.

 

We love feedback

Not the sort where the microphone and amplifier do that thing they do but but the stuff where you tell us what you think of us. We’d prefer it if you kept your comments to the subject matter of the material but we do promise never to wear those trousers again. Thanks for the advice. If you have ideas that might improve our books why not take out an advert on prime-time TV and hope we watch it. Contact us or leave a comment.

 

Scrap It

The authors of this stuff have done Christian youth work in a few places around the country. One lesson comes across again and again – be willing to scrap your preparation. You are not running a school. You are dealing with volunteers.

 

Sometimes your group will have burning issues that need to be discussed. A good time to have a discussion about relationships is when two members have fallen out. Be willing to save your prepared work for another day and have a session on relationship building.

 

On other occasions everyone will unexpectedly be high as kites (emotionally we mean, not through drug use) and you can’t get them to concentrate. This is the time to open your youth group leader's emergency box and do some games and stuff. If you don’t have a youth group leader's emergency box you may have been blessed with a lack of emergencies or a brilliantly creative mind that can’t see the point. For all others, at minimum, look at Know Ideas 1-4. They will save you embarrassment in the future.

 

Money

Godstuff copes by having generous individuals and churches send donations. If part of your feedback involves this then we can do more work to help make your life easier. Thanks for using the material. We hope it’s helpful.

 

Finally

Don’t get depressed if results don’t go that well. Only God knows the real point of your running your current group. He may have put you there not for the wild bunch of teenagers running crazily around the church hall but for the one keen Christian lass who will one day be a global evangelist. Or mother one. Try and step back from any desire to see the results you expect, and trust God. It is his work. He knows what he wants out of it. Your obedient service plus his results equals dynamite. Thanks for doing it.