Why Project Runway’s Heidi Klum Would Be a Great Youth Worker

pr9-timandheidiReality television star and super model Heidi Klum is one of my favorite people on Lifetime’s Project Runway.  (Obviously…she’s the only reason most guys watch that show!)

My middle son and I watch every week – and the rest of the family endures.  I have a few good friends, like Stephanie Caro, who watch with me in absentia through text exclamations and criticisms.  (We should seriously be fan-judges on the next season!)

Last week, after a particularly poignant moment with the show’s mentor, Tim Gunn, Stephanie and I decided he would make a great youth leader.  She expounded on that idea here!

But as I watched this week, I realized he isn’t the only potential youth worker on that show.  Heidi would be a great youth worker, as well.

1.  Heidi gives clear and understandable expectations at the beginning of every show.  She succinctly lays out the parameters for each challenge.  And while your students might give push back with boundaries, it’s one way they know they are loved.

2.  Heidi clearly uses her expertise in fashion to honestly share truth with the designers in an effort to help them become better.  She never pulls punches or waters down fashion sense for fear of hurting someone’s feelings.  The Truth youth workers wield is poised to help them be better.  They don’t get there if we water that down.

3.  That said – she never gets personal – and she’s never rude.  She has found the perfect balance of disagreeing with a designer’s choices while honoring them as a designer.  Students can learn to respect a youth leader who can disagree with them without denigrating them.

3.  Heidi says ‘you suck’ with a smile – and then lets the designers know they are loved with a kiss.  Sometimes we have to say hard things to students.  They can receive it when it comes in love.

And face it, Heidi is gorgeous.  Do you know how many boys you’d have in your youth ministry if she was one of your youth leaders??!

Youth Ministry Wisdom from Duck Dynasty #1

734377_433830263393012_1083168096_nI’ll confess.  Right now, this post is 1 of 1.  But here’s the truth – and if you watch Duck Dynasty, you know – that show is chock full of youth ministry wisdom, so I know there will be more!!

Last night was the season 4 premier of Duck Dynasty.  The show centered around the celebration of Phil and Kay Robertson’s 50th wedding anniversary (I think…I’m not sure anyone but Kay ever mentioned the actual year — and she said 48.)

The Robertson children decided to give their parents a ‘real’ wedding, as their parents were married by a Justice of the Peace originally.  As a complete surprise, this event would require lots of folks volunteering and playing their parts to pull off the momentous occasion.  And as the daughters-in-law began to pull people into the process, one of the unsuspecting men came out with this pearl of youth ministry wisdom:  “Never volunteer when you don’t know what you’re getting into.”

People who serve in youth ministry need to know what you’re asking of them.  Many times, we’re in a hurry to fill the spot, grab any warm body, connect with someone we KNOW will make a great connection with students.  And we put the cart before the horse, unsuspectingly.  We enlist a potential leader without clearly communicating what they’ll be doing.  Sure – they may know they’re volunteering to teach a class – but do they know what material they’ll be using, how many leadership meeting they’ll be expected to attend, what they need to be doing to prep for their teaching time, how they’ll be expected to connect with kids outside the class….do they know what they’re volunteering for?

Communicate well by having a job description for every adult you’ll enlist.  Spell out everything.  Then follow up as that potential leader begins serving.  Continue to clearly communicate vision and expectation.  You’ll create leaders for the long-haul.

“Never volunteer when you don’t know what you’re getting into.”  If you’re church members are watching Duck Dynasty, they might just have a higher expectation now….and a beard.

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