How can we expect students to be the church when they walk away from our ministry if they have not had the opportunity to be the church when they are with us?
We have to realize as church leaders that at some point our maturing process needs to move from theory to process. The optimal time for this is during the teen years.
Students need to be included as a regular part of the serving teams – meaning they don’t get special “student” training but go to training with everyone else and are included in appreciation, recruiting, etc. Otherwise the attitude can turn into just using students to fill empty spots. There must be an intentional attitude of discipling students in their serving roles.
The best way to get students involved in serving in the church is by getting everybody on board: senior leaders, children’s ministry leaders, and student ministry leaders. If we don’t have the involvement and excitement of everyone, then this can’t succeed.