Orange is not a program or a curriculum. Rather its the focus that you bring to programs or curriculums. It’s the lenses through which you view ministry. Here’s the five principles of “thinking orange.”
1. Integrate Strategy-plan with the end in mind (where do we want students to be spiritually when they leave our church?)
2. Refine Your Message-teach with the end in mind (what Biblical truths do we want our students to carry with them?) One nugget I got out of this segment is that all truth is equally inspired, but not all truth is equally important. We’re not trying to teach them everything in the Bible, just the important things. If we give them those things they’ll have the tools they need to learn the other.
3. Elevate Community-students need a place to belong and people who believe in them (where do we want them to go for peer/community support?)
4. Reactivate the Family-partner with parents, don’t replace them (who has the most potential to influence the faith of our students?) This was a big one for me. I wish someone would have told it to me before I began my youth ministry career. I fear I did too much “replacing” and not enough “partnering.” In this regard they said parents are seeking three things from the church as it relates to raising faithful children: 1) Give me a plan. 2) Tell me what to say. 3) Give me community (someone saying the same thing as me)
5. Leverage Influence-being verses going & doing (when the busyness of children/youth ministry is over what happens to the spirituality of our students?) Another one I wish someone would have shared with me. Being a Christian is more than bowling alleys, skating rinks, devos, VBS, classes, retreats, etc. Our job is not to keep kids busy, its to pass on our faith. The busyness approach to ministry works for the short-term, but after the ride is over most students check out of the church. We have to teach them how to “be” Christians not just “do” the things that Christians do.