Ask the Youth Ministry Experts: Discipling the Opposite Sex in Youth Ministry
Youth ministers sent in great questions into the virtual Rooted Q and A, and we wanted to dig a little deeper to get answers for you. Here’s the first in a series of posts we hope will offer practical answers to your ministry questions.
What are some ways a male youth pastor can personally and wisely disciple girls in the youth group? Josh Hussung, Pastor of Youth and Families at Grace Community Church in Nashville, Tennessee
First, let’s talk about how you interact with girls in your group on a personal level. Think about Jesus. Jesus did not avoid women, nor did he consider women a threat to his personal integrity. He looked them in the eyes and cared for their souls as he would with anyone else. So don’t be weird around the girls in your group. They are, in Christ, your little sisters (1 Tim. 5:2), so treat them as such. Ask them questions, remember and refer to their interests, celebrate their accomplishments, and offer to pray for them when they are hurting.
When you are speaking, make sure that you use illustrations that will speak girls. Sure, some of your girls will appreciate the occasional football metaphor, but if your illustrations are mostly focused on interests that would connect with your guys, branch out. When you use an example or tell a story about a person, use both male and female examples from time to time.
Finally, your volunteers are key here. While we want to minister to girls as well as guys, it is also important that you have godly women working with your students who can connect to the girls on a deeper level. These women can have discussions with the girls in your group that you would be unable to have, can spend time with them that would be inappropriate for you, and provide an example of godly womanhood that you cannot provide.
Please see also: How Do Male Ministers Lead Female Students?