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dayaway

Sample day away with youth workers and some young people

The purpose of the day? To seek God, pray, get right with God, to ask God his plans, to share ideas, visions, plans, concepts, to share our hearts.

We took paper and pens, Bibles, music, a guitar, mp3 players etc. We went to a nearby retreat centre on a weekday after schools and colleges had broken up..

Before you go away, decide what you want out of the day.

One of the youth workers did a general plan for our day:

9.30 - Leave church
10 - Arrive
10-10.15 - Tea, coffee, coke, intro to the day
10.15-10.30 - Worship time
10.30-10.50 - Individual Bible Study
10.50-11.20 - Sharing what God had said - visions, verses, tunes, ideas, insights
11-12 - Prayer Time
12-1 - Lunch and Chill Time
1-2.15 - Planning for the Year Ahead
2.15-2.30 - Tea, coffee, coke
2.30-3.45 - More Planning for the Year Ahead
3.45-4 - Time of worship, thanks to God
4.30 - Get Home, yee haa!

Important

You may want to be more free than this kind of scheduled stuff, depends how you and your team work..

I'm very chilled but it's important to have a structure to the day. Why? Otherwise we can go round in circles, not be focused, not achieve much. At the same time, we gotta be open to the Holy Spirit completely and not limit or restrain his work through us.

Here are some ideas to focus..

Do an A4 sheet for everyone in the group asking these questions. This focuses people, forces them to think through issues that I know I think through but they may not necessarily as we all work differently. It also gives chance for people's ideas, thoughts, opinions. It makes them realise they are involved and important. It clarifies thinking. It inspires. It challenges us.

Question – what is the Biblical basis for youth work?
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Question – what are the essentials in any effective youth work?
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Question – do you know some of the current moves of God in UK Xn youth work?
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Question – where do you see the youth work going in the future?
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Question – what activities, priorities, events, ideas, do we need for our youth work?
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Some other ideas

Time of worship – print up some songs. Bible verses, pictures, words.. Get everyone to suggest a worship song

Quiet-Time – getting right and away with God. Take your favourite part of the Bible, write a quiet-time then come back and share with others

Seeking God in prayer – encourage people to be doing this before we go away

Where’s your heart at – what burns with a passion inside people’s hearts?

Time of Prayer – thanking God, confessing sin, seeking guidance, more of God, to open more doors, envision us, more of God and his love and power, fresh anointing, to be filled with the Holy Spirit. What is God saying to us now?

Review of the last year – what has been right, what has been wrong, what can be improved (quality, spiritually, programming). Where do we need to make changes? Do we do too much, too little? Do people feel supported, encouraged, challenged. Are people’s lives being transformed into likeness of Jesus? Where does the church need to change? How can we go deeper with God? More of God? How can be more Biblical? Improve, challenge links with ‘main’ church?

Time of creative thinking – need a load of big sheets and pens, lots of paper, drawing materials and stuff

Which young people to go – need to be wise, those that can, potential elders, leaders, those on the fringe to get their perspective?

Do you need to make significant changes in direction? Do you need to set up whole new ministries? Do you do something new, new kinds of evangelism, mission..?

We've been to Lithuania twice, many young people have been on individual mission - NGM in Bristol, Albania with Baptist Missionary Society, Guatemala with Soapbox, also to North America with Urban Promise briefly, kids camps, Festival Manchester 2003, Soul IN The City London 2004, are looking to take the 18 plus group to North America and more. I don't say this to say 'hey look at us, aren't we good' but to encourage you. It is possible if God calls and worth it!!

Draw up plans for action – what, who will do it, clarify roles

Youth Work Priorities – write up a draft document (we already have one) and go through this document

THINK BIG! - Big ideas, stuff that's beyond us - read UCB notes from Sun 13 July 2003

Feedback

Once all the ideas have been assembled, get one person to put them down on paper and make sure everyone who went gets a copy. Then decide how you'll put the ideas into effect. Which ideas? Why? When?

Make sure the ideas don't simply go down a black hole!

Finally

Remember that no matter what your church is like, no matter what your minister is like, your God is bigger! If you feel it's right to share your ideas with your pastor, leaders that's awesome. If you feel it may frustrate you as we have in the past, don't worry just go for it.

I tell the youth work team to invest time in doing what they feel the church isn't doing. So you're not supported by your church leaders? A lot of us aren't effectively. Fine. Make sure YOU support the young people. Don't feel the church is open to the Holy Spirit? Cool. Make sure you develop a youth work that is! Don't just dis - take action where you can!

Go for it. God believes in you. Enjoy! We out..

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