NNYM #3 TIPS TO BUILD RELATIONSHIPS in your local network

2 TIPS TO BUILD RELATIONSHIPS in your local network.

Networks that flourish and thrive will typically need to overcome a couple of simple yet significant issues that go beyond geographical or denominational differences. Without fail, youth leaders are are busy people. They have duties to perform, people to see, and tasks to add to their calendar. When they show up for a network meeting, their focus and reasons for being there can vary. Every youth leader can benefit from building stronger relationships with other area youth leaders. However it is not going to be the result of Facebook interactions or sitting in the same room talking about the weather. It takes intentionally moving towards deeper discussions.
Here are a couple of “self-focus” issues to overcome in order to build depth into your network member’s relationships:

1. Overcome being too self-focused to personally care. One tip to make sure that a network stays connected relationally, is to STOP the idle chitchat. Early in a network meeting, before other agendas are announced, take time to share with each other, care for each other, and pray for each other. This does not need to take a long time. Break up into groups of only 2-3 people. It will bless everyone involved. Challenge all to briefly share a burden and share a blessing in their life, and then for the person sitting next to them to briefly pray for them and about what they shared immediately. It only takes 5 or 10 minutes max, and everyone benefits. A possible follow-up is to ask the leaders to follow-up with each other’s prayer requests within the next week. A quick note or message to remind each other that you are praying can be significant.
2. Overcome being too self-focused to work together. Another tip is to help network members take the focus off of their personal ministry and onto sometimes doing ministry together. Establishing common ground can be a bit of a process, but chances are high that you and the other youth leaders in your community have more in common than not. Finding needs that should be met in the community could potentially lead to sharing some ministry events that fit many ministries vision and planning needs. In fact, this can be an opportunity of focused corporate prayer that can lead to a great amount of unity and shared inertia of activity, furthering unifying the body of Christ. Along they way, relationships among the leaders in the network will be strongly enhanced as a healthy byproduct of time spent serving Christ. It’s a win-win because local needs get met while youth leaders from different ministries collaborate together!

Building relationships can happen on purpose, but that is less likely then it happening almost on accident as you go. Using these tips to help remove “self-focus” can help you to do both while you work together to further the kingdom of God. It takes a little bit of intentionality, but the benefit is beyond measure.


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