Growth Leaders Personal Growth

The 4 P’s To A Successful Youth Ministry

January 10, 2017

Everyone wants a quick fix and magic potion to make their ministry awesome, well here it is! There isn’t one. Youth ministry is not easy and there is no magic potion that will make everything awesome but there are some practical steps you can take to running a successful youth ministry. Here are the 4 P’s to a successful youth ministry.

1. Passion

You MUST to have passion in what you do this CANNOT just be a ‘job.’ We all show passion differently and that is fine, I am not saying you need to jump up and down, scream and yell, and go crazy over your ministry (although you might, and that is fine too) but you do need to have a burning passion inside in two areas.

~A Passion for Jesus

This is absolutely essential. If you are not passionate about Jesus then take a break, do some work on yourself and find a passion for Jesus. This is unquestionably the FIRST characteristic you must have if you are going to run a ministry and guide students to a deeper relationship with Him.

~A Passion for Students

This follows at a close second behind a passion for Jesus. If you are not passionate about students that is fine, not everyone is, but you probably shouldn’t be doing student ministry. Most of you probably are and that is why you got into student ministry in the first place, but some of you maybe need to stop and think about if you do have a passion for students and if there is anything you can do to rekindle that passion.

2. Plan

Too many youth workers jumped into youth ministry simply for fun and they figured they could just wing it and do fine. And to be honest, many youth workers do just fine, but fine shouldn’t be the goal. We should strive for excellence and should desire to do the best possible job leading the ministry God put us in charge of. We need a plan in our ministries. A mission, vision, and plan of attack is just as essential to success as passion is, because passion alone without a plan is useless.

3. Power

The third P, power, is again talking about two different areas where we need power.

~Will Power

We must have the will power to get it done. Nobody said it was going to be easy, and if they did they lied. Youth ministry requires a ton of work and we need to be willing to work our butts off to make it happen. We can learn, and talk all we want but there must come a point where our will power kicks in and we actually do it.

~God’s power

When success happens we must realize even though we worked hard and we do have will power, it was NOT YOU it was the power of God. In Philippians 2 it tells us to do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, both traps are so easily fallen into in youth ministry. We  must remember to constantly fight the tendency to look to ourselves as the one who accomplished anything but instead understand it is God. But, also note using God’s power as an excuse for a lack of will power is being a terrible steward of what God has given you.

4. Prayer

You want a successful ministry? Pray! Pray for your students, your leaders, yourself, your church, your leadership, the parents, the program, the sound system, pray for everything!

Those four quick P-words are so simple yet so powerful. I could have written a short book on them but I hope that simply scratching the surface has helped you and sparked some thought as to how you can improve yourself as you lead your ministry. Are these “P’s” present in me and if so, how can I sharpen them, and if not, how can I make them happen? Thank you so much for being a youth worker!



Written By Todd Jones

Todd has been in youth ministry for over a decade and has a passion for reaching lost students and training youth workers to do the same. He is the founder of  Stoked On Youth Ministry, a speaker, author, and pastor. When Todd is not writing or speaking he enjoys surfing, baseball and most importantly hanging out with his awesome wife and three beautiful daughters. You can connect with Todd on Twitter @TheTodd_Jones, Instagram @Todd_Jones or for speaking inquiries visit




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