Leadership moments are crucial, valuable experiences for young people. After giving youth space to experience relationship, fellowship, worship, and discipleship, the next step is to provide room for leadership. In the scheme of the Shipyard model, leadership is the point we begin to move young people out into a new world of ministry and opportunity.
It is vital to give youth the chance to assume a role in ministry. As the steering wheel or rudder of a ship influences the direction it goes in, so also do leadership roles help young people navigate through the challenges of following Christ. In providing youth with these growing moments, you honor a sacred, Biblical trust that just may change the direction of the church for the better.
The key here is to give youth these roles sooner rather than later. There is no reason to wait until some nebulous moment in the future where they might mature enough to assume a role in ministry. If they don't begin the exercise of taking responsibility to do things for God's cause now, it becomes much harder to do it in the future.
The cornbread and beans of developing young leaders is in the active participation in service.
Identify young people in your church that you think are ready, right now, to learn how to do something new that they are interested in (could be anything from video editing to leading a children's choir) and then find someone who can train them.
God gives spiritual gifts to each young person who commits their life to Him. Give young people a spiritual gifts assessment to find out where their strengths lie.
Expect great things from young people. In John 14:12, Jesus says that we will do "even greater things." Trust that this will be the case.
Want more suggestions on growing others in leadership? Find "Out of the Shipyard" on our Resource page!