One of the major things that we do as youth pastors is cast vision to our students. [we also cast vision to our volunteers and staff, but that is a different post] So, how do you cast vision to your students? What I’m about to lay out for you is A way to do it, not THE way… the best thing to do is to KNOW your own group and EVALUATE what method is best for you.
Here is how I do it:
#1) take an entire night and devote it to the vision.
1 or 2 times a year I will break from series mode and teach on our purposes and values and what we are all about. Whenever we GO BACK to our mission, we are vision casting for our students. These one shots work for quick vision pushes and mobilizing and moving students to action quickly.
#2) talk about the vision ALL THE TIME.
almost every series… like clockwork… you can count on hearing part of the mission or values. For example, one of my core values is connection through authentic community. I’ll usually work into my messages (at least once a series) the importance of friendships and relationships and community. Then I will usually vision cast our small group ministry and the necessity for students to jump in to it. This is actually where we see the most results. In fact, it took almost 3 years, but after a while our students started speaking the language that we were speaking about our mission. It’s because we beat that drum all the time. Bill Hybels (senior pastor of Willow Creek Community Church and the Leader of the Willow Creek Association) says, “Vision leaks,” meaning that as quickly as you poured the vision into the people, it will inevitably leak out over time and they will forget what you said. That is why #2 is so important for vision casting. One of the ways that you know your students GET the vision is when they start to talk about it like you talk about it. When they start speaking the “VISION LANGUAGE” they get it. Look for it on their facebook and twitter statuses and listen for it in their conversations. This happens when you OVER-COMMUNICATE the vision.
#3) use small group leaders to reinforce vision.
You cannot be the only voice casting the vision. You need others reinforcing that vision over and over and over again. Empower your volunteers to be vision casters. Make sure that they know and understand the vision, and then release them to reinforce it.
so how do you cast vision in your youth ministry?