Last week at our Student Leadership Conference I held an adult leaders’ meeting at the beginning of the conference and got to share some of my ideas about how to be a leader at a camp/conference. It was a fun meeting, but I forgot to say one thing that I really believe. Here it is:

“Your kids may listen more intently to other people who say the same thing that you always say.”

I was reminded of this truth when I read my dear friend, Matt McGill’s blog titled, “FOUR things I reLEARNED about Youth Ministry from Student Leader Conference.” Matt actually 5 things (but that’s another story)…but, inspire of his difficulty with numbering, he wrote some great learnings–here’s one:

3. Students Love Listening To Other Communicators
About 100 years ago, I was at a conference and Cathi (one of our students) said, “That speaker was amazing, I really need to respect my parents more.” I nearly exploded into a super nova, as I’d been telling her that for the previous 4 months. This time around, I was ready for it, and was genuinely grateful for the new insights our students gained. (even though if they would just listen to everything I say, they would never have another problem, question, or conflict in their life ever again). 😉

You could come speak to my youth group and say what I’ve been saying for years and my kids could say, “Wow! Wasn’t she a great speaker? I got so much out of that message.” There have been times when I’ve wanted to scream, “She didn’t say anything I haven’t said…every week! Actually, she used MY message.”

I wanted to remind the adult leaders of this reality. I would be saying things that they’ve been trying to communicate to their kids, and because of the setting, the different spokesperson, and a unique style…your kids will hear the same message… in a new way. And, instead of being frustrated, I would encourage you embrace it and allow God the freedom to speak thru other vessels… even if it doesn’t seem like it should happen that way.

Just in case you don’t listen to our podcast and don’t know the person of Matt McGill, here’s a little of his genus (it’s actually point 5 of his 4 point blog).

“I am, by nature, a ridiculous person. In many ways, I’m barely a member of the human species and probably closer to a wild animal. This isn’t because like the outdoors (actually, I hate the sun), but because normal human behavior isn’t normal for me.”

Question: What is it that you say over and over again that your audience doesn’t seem to grasp?