One of the challenges I feel in youth ministry is to constantly produce messages, activities, small group questions, videos, and reflections. In order to stay ahead of the curve and come up with different ideas and components my volunteer team and I need a creative process. It allows us to stay fresh and relevant in an ever changing world.
To produce a growing and moving youth ministry you need a creative process. Along with producing materials you need to make sure you have a system dedicated to brainstorming ideas and thinking outside the box. The question is, “What does this system look like?” Your creative process should include:
- Making Capturing Ideas A Habit: You need to create an idea bank. In other words make sure you are capturing, writing and recording every idea that comes to mind. Whether it’s using software like Evernote or traditional methods like a notebook, make sure you get it down. You might not know what to do with it right away; however, it could be something useful for later.
- Building In Time To Dream: When you give yourself permission to day dream, you allow ideas to percolate and grow. Building in time to dream might mean quiet time in the morning or doing something mindless like washing the dishes. Slow yourself down, reflect, think and again make sure you record whatever comes to mind.
- Setting Deadlines And Goals: The creative process takes a lot of intangible disciplines; however, it also takes firm ones too. Create deadlines for projects so that the sense of urgency will move you forward. It’s easy to get stuck on an idea and the risk is overworking it pass perfection. It’s similar to over seasoning a sauce, too much time and you might ruin it.
- Delegating And Clarifying Action Steps: You might come up with all the ideas on your own; however, you need people to help you make them happen. Whenever brainstorming make sure there is a next step, even if it’s just to revisit an idea. When you have action steps it assures that ideas are never lost in the pages of a notebook or subfile in your computer.
- Creating Accountability: Have people check-in with you or your team to see how the project or idea is coming. Give them details like deadlines so that they can remind you what’s coming up. Sometimes you might feel like holding back on an idea because it’s personal. Having accountability will encourage you to share the idea and be bold.
To be truly creative means having a creative process. Create mile markers and a framework for the flow. Be intentional about what you do and dream big. By having a creative process you’ll help your ministry grow into a movement that is impacting in lives.
What’s a part of your creative process?