I am often asked what to look for in a small group leader in children’s ministry.
While there are many qualities that those who fill this position should have, there is one that stands out above the rest for me. A small group leader should be a great listener.
Yes I believe that a small group leader should have a vibrant realtionship with God, spend time in His word, and be passionate about sharing Jesus with kids. Those are all very important.
What I have learned over the years serving as a small group leader is how important relationship is in leading our kids each week. Part of that relationship begins with listening to them. They want to talk about their lives. They want to talk about how they feel. They want someone to listen and more than that know that the person listening cares about what they are saying.
Yes, part of our calling as small group leaders is to share Jesus with our kids. But I believe that before they will really hear us, our kids have to know that we are listening. They have so many people in their lives today doing all the talking and not many who are taking the time to really listen to them.
Think of it like this…
Imagine you are sharing something with your small group about God being our Father, but three of the kids in your group have absentee earthly fathers which means they have absolutely no real concept of what God as our Father means. By listening to them share about how their lives are without dad and what they are feeling about it, you will be able to better minister to them.
Having conversations with your kids and listening more can change how you teach inside the intimate setting of a small group. Our kids want to talk about what is happening in their lives. Sharing Jesus with them requires us to really listen to what they have to say.