Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Top Student Ministry Books


Jasper Speaks:

Over the past several days I have seen many postings on Youth Ministry blogs about the best Youth Ministry books per the blog author. So, since some of my favorites didn't make the other lists, I thought I would jump on board.

                                             
1. The Holy Bible - New Living Translation
Seriously, start with the Bible. There are multiple instances of youth ministry done right from Moses to Paul. And of course the ultimate Youth Pastor --- Jesus. I like using the NLT in my lessons because of its clarity in today's language.

2. Purpose Driven Youth Ministry
Still a classic. This book helps to put it all in order for you. It addresses why we do what we do and also addresses your personal life in ministry.

3. The Seven Checkpoints
If PDYM answers the how questions, The Seven Checkpoints answers the what. I love the way it challenges me to program my messages around the seven essentials teens should know when they graduate from your ministry. I use this book every fall when I sit down to plan my teaching for the year. It is an invaluable resource.

4. Simple Student Ministry 
This book revolutionized my philosophy of ministry a few years back. It challenges the myth that student ministries must be filled with activities. It changed my heart from being a complex Youth Pastor. Click here to read my blog on that process. This article, in varying forms appeared at youthministry.com and in Group magazine.

5. Your First Two Years In Youth Ministry
Doug Fields makes a second appearance on the list with this great little book. I would recommend it to any new youth pastor but also to anyone starting in a new ministry. Even as a veteran it provided helpful transition hints and reminders that made transitioning to a new ministry less stressful.

Those are my top five. I realize my list is neither as long or as academic as some I have read but being in the trenches I know that as Youth Pastors we need the best bang for our buck that takes the least amount of our time. These books all are easy reads but can lead to amazing transformation.