160601bible-study-young-peoplePreparing to teach the Bible to students is a great responsibility and privilege! The most important part of any youth Bible study lesson is the time you spend preparing. We must teach out of the overflow of what God is teaching us.

Here are five steps that will help you prepare for next Sunday’s lesson:

Step 1 – Prepare yourself through prayer

A prepared youth Bible study leader will spend time early in the week praying — for next Sunday’s lesson, for students, for God to show you how to start your lesson and end with application. There are no shortcuts to prayer!

Step 2 – Prepare the lesson and have a plan

I have never forgotten this quote; “If you don’t have a plan, your youth sure will — and it won’t look anything like the plan you would have had, if you had a plan!” There are three non-negotiables in preparing a youth Bible study lesson: motivation, examination and application. Basing your lesson on these three principles brings creativity and structure to your lesson.

Step 3 – Prepare for the needs of your students

I am amazed how many well-intentioned youth teachers think youth Bible study is all about them! Let’s don’t forget why we are teaching and who we are teaching. Don’t come in and “instill” information for 30 or 40 minutes. It’s not about you, the teacher; it’s about the students!

Step 4 – Prepare by connecting with students

There is no excuse today for a youth Bible study leader to not be connecting with their students on a weekly basis. Technology is our friend and we need to use it. It is so easy to contact every student by a short text every week.

Step 5 – Prepare your space and be a little creative

If you already know where every student in your class is going to sit this coming Sunday, then you definitely need to rethink your room environment and chair arrangement! No wonder students think Bible study is boring and predictable! Change up your space about every three weeks. It doesn’t have to be earth shattering, but change something so students (and you) don’t get in a rut of every week being the same.

So my challenge to all youth Bible study leaders in our Tennessee Baptist churches is to have a passion for God, a passion for the truth as it is found in God’s word, a passion for study and learning, a passion to share what you learned in your preparation, and a passion for making a current application to the Scripture that impacts student’s lives.

“For the word of God is living and effective and sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating as far as to divide soul, spirit, joints, and marrow; it is a judge of ideas and thoughts of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)

Bruce Edwards serves as the Youth Ministry Specialist with the Tennessee Baptist Convention. To connect with Bruce about these and other youth ministry topics, email him at bedwards@tnbaptist.org.

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