On Friday, I discussed a really important idea: If we’re only planning our college ministries year-to-year, we’re likely to be less effective than we should be. So I challenged any of you “annual planners” to consider reevaluating, “re-upping,” or re-planning for the semester to come.

Again, the question is, Is the ministry planning you did last summer really just as effective as it would be if you did it right now?

What are some areas that might grow a little stale when planned or organized too far in advance? Here are 6 areas I’ve written on before but that fit this discussion quite well!

Your leadership team: Depending on how you do student leadership, it’s likely some new potential leaders have arisen since August. Have you considered re-establishing your commitment to student involvement by opening the leadership application process now, or in January?

Your small groups: If small groups are supposed to be part of the “DNA” of your campus ministry, why oh why would you only have a “push” at the beginning of the school year? Some students have matured, others have become intrigued by hearing about the groups, and some are simply new to your ministry. Re-up your commitment to small group discipleship by opening present groups – or forming new ones – for January.

Your vision and values: Students have short attention spans, and a good chunk of next semester’s group probably wasn’t around when you shared your vision and values last semester. Recast the vision, re-espouse your foundational values.

Your recruitment: It’s crazy to think that students are only going to join a ministry in the first few weeks of the school year. And besides, there are students out there who have wandered from your college ministry or from other ministries… and they need to find a new community LONG before next August. Are you going to recruit those students – and others – in January?

Your programs or teams: There’s no way every good service idea, ministry team, or other ongoing program needs to wait until August to be started. Are there some “new institutions” you can start in January?

Your programs or teams, part two: Likewise, some stuff should be stopped. Not this summer. Now.

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