Dear Youth Pastor, Kid’s Ministry Does Affect You!

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(The following is an excerpt from my book The New Wineskin of Children’s & Youth Ministry which can be purchased here or on

I’ll be honest. I have never been a youth pastor and have never exclusively taught teenagers more than a couple of times. Yet, in every kids’ or family conference I ever did, teenagers made up a fair percentage of the attendees.

In fact, there were several times when teens pleaded with me to let them come to our events, saying, “You’re teaching kids things that nobody is teaching us!” So, I allowed them to come. I never had any of them sitting in the back of the room bored, rolling their eyes, or being a behavior problem because my teaching techniques or approach was for “little kids.” It was the content of what they were learning that held them and kept them actively
engaged in our services. Many of them came to multiple events.

The hunger of teens who came simply confirmed what I already knew about the children, which is “kids are hungry for a supernatural touch from God.” They are anxious to be equipped to be a part of what He is doing in the earth today. They no longer want to sit on the sidelines watching things happen. They want to be a part of what’s happening. And so, it seems, teenagers feel the same. Numerous times over the past twenty years, I’ve had youth
pastors tell me that with a few modifications, they used my kids’ curriculums to teach their teens. It was because, once again, it seemed there was almost nothing equivalent to what we teach children in the world of youth ministry.

Where I did intersect with youth ministries, however, was in the transition between kids and youth groups when my children aged out and graduated into the teen ministries. I had worked diligently to see my children filled with the Spirit, praying in tongues, learning to hear the voice of God and be led by His Spirit, actively healing the sick, evangelizing, prayer, operating in the gifts of the Spirit, and more.

However, upon leaving my group, I was disheartened to watch many of them forget almost everything I had taught them over time. The reason was the youth groups were focused on pizza parties, games, giving ten or fifteen-minute devotionals, and calling it good. There was no continuation or acceleration in the teen groups of how we had equipped the children. Many of the children’s pastors I have trained over the years said their experiences were the same. There was no continuity between children’s ministry and the youth groups and much of what had been imparted was now shelved.

Recently, I spoke with a children’s pastor who has been using my curriculums faithfully for twenty years in their kids’ ministry in various churches. They have raised two generations on our materials, and saw tremendous spiritual growth in their children. He told me a few years ago he went to their youth pastor to discuss the group of kids he was sending into the teen group in the fall.

“You better get ready,” he told the youth pastor, “because the group of kids you’re getting is not like any other group of kids you’ve ever had.” By this, he meant his children were spiritually mature, operating in the gifts of the Spirit, healing ministry, hungry for God, and more. They were ready to advance, not go backwards.

The youth pastor is said to have just looked at him with a blank stare and no comment. Sometime later, however, he returned to the children’s pastor with tears in his eyes, saying, “You were right. These kids are different, and I wasn’t ready for them.”

At the clear urging of the Holy Spirit in 2023, we sensed a shift coming in our ministry to be much more aggressive about going after teenagers and learning to link arms with those youth leaders who are intensely interested in taking the teens further in the things of the Spirit. I am assuming you are one of them since you purchased this book. What I have discovered over the years is that everything we do and the reasons behind them are things that need to be included in every youth ministry, too.

When I began writing this book, I had already named it “The New Wineskin of Children’s Ministry,” thinking I would solely concentrate on children’s pastors and leaders as usual. But the Holy Spirit arrested me one day saying, “You are going to have to change the name of your book. You are to call it ‘The New Wineskin of Children’s and Youth Ministry.’” This is the book you are now holding in your hands.

There will be some of you who read this and will be skeptical of it all. For others, it will confirm that what you are doing is on the right track. Still, others of you are chomping at the bit hungry to find out more and discover how you, too, can be a part of this new advancing End-times army of Spirit-empowered young people.

I am unaware of any other book where the author tries to speak to both children’s and youth ministers at the same time. It is a stretch. However, youth pastor, I implore you not to try to skip around this book to try to find only the parts that seem to apply to you. You are not an island unto yourself. Children’s ministry and youth ministry are intricately connected, though it may not be obvious on the surface. To understand where the local church is at you must have an understanding of what is and is not happening in our children’s ministries, especially the one in your own church.

Those who are children today are the ones you will soon inherit. Everything said in these pages will directly affect how you are to move forward with your teens.

Please join us for the most exciting adventure of your life as you begin equipping your youth to enter the world of the supernatural power of God! Let’s combine our skills, knowledge, and experience to promote the kingdom of God together. May the day come when the transition between children’s and youth ministries is seamless and incredibly powerful, where we launch all generations deeper into the greater things that Jesus said we would do.

Customer Reviews:

This is sooo needed! Thank you for putting it in a book to share! This is mine and Jeremiah’s heart that the kids will continue to move to the next level spiritually they have the same Holy Spirit and can definitely be more mature than the adults spiritually!! We need those kids and teens to rise to the next level! Let’s be open to let them soar in the Holy Spirit! ~ Michele Playle

I am LOVING your book! This is going to be such a great resource to the Body of Christ. ~ Liesl Pienaar

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