Hear Me Out
03.30.2015 posted by Chris Marchand
When I was a youth pastor, I loved the planning meetings that I had with my staff. The ideas we came up with, the laughter that ensued, and the collective energy that made iffy ideas become amazing experiences was so valuable. Honestly, I think I had more fun planning the event and hanging with my staff than actually going on the trip. We often would sit and spend time hearing each other out. This is an important practice in the development of ministry teams. I have found that in order to have the best of something means that it needs to go around the room to be critiqued and examined by several different people. The more eyes you have on something the clearer it can become. We’d spend hours going around the room and listening to people’s ideas and thoughts. For the type-A list makers, it would seem like our time together was a waste. They just wanted to get the job done. However, for the creative collaborators our time together was precious. And in order to make sure we didn’t drive the type-A people nuts we did create action plans from all our ideating. People left with tasks and clear purposes. We were making and crafting something together and everyone’s voice mattered. It was important to spend quality and quantity time hearing all the perspectives in order to make something great.
The “Hear Me Out” practice is something that we are currently doing at Awana. Journey is in the process of being updated. Whenever we update a curriculum it begins with what we call the Discover Phase. Say you wanted to build a house. You know you want to build a house but can you build that house anywhere? You cannot build a house on the ocean, unless it was a boathouse, it would sink to the bottom. You cannot build a skyscraper on a beach. The building will topple over. That’s why before even your homes were built someone had to get out the land surveying equipment, gather a lot of data, and get a really good idea of what the environment is like before building begins. The last thing a builder wants to hear is that he has to scrap his project because of some protected wild life was found or some geological factors were not considered before the diggers came and concrete is poured.
We need you and I invite you to be part of our discovery phase. You (Journey leaders, students, parents, youth pastors, senior pastors, volunteers, missionaries, etc.) know the landscape. Your thoughts and insights are extremely important to us. Please consider participating in our Journey Survey. This survey is a way for everyone to sit at the table and say, “hear me out” when it comes to the development of AwanaYM’s Journey program. As a thank you for your time we’re giving everyone who participates in our survey one of our Black Journey Drawstring bags.
Thank you so much for your time and dedication to reach student’s lives with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I cannot wait to hear what you have to say about Journey. While I wish I could get you all in our team room and hear what you have to say but since that isn’t possible please accept this invitation to pull up a chair and begin a conversation about the ministry you care deeply about. Blessings!