This post was written by Cera Talamantes, a member of the INCM Blog team.
I love Orlando in January!
It’s the time of year that I get to go to the Children’s Pastors Conference (CPC).
From the moment the confetti falls at the end of CPC, my heart longs for the next time I can reunite with friends who have become family.
I work throughout the year to grow new friendships that I formed while at CPC.
Being at the event gives me the feeling of being spiritually, emotionally, and mentally full.
There are so many new things I have learned. I feel energized to implement new ideas that I learned from leaders across the globe who shared their ministry and leadership knowledge.
We sometimes come home filled to the brim with new concepts and ideas and feel ready to put to practice the new skills learned.
Or it can feel like you are drinking from a fire hydrant hose as you reflect on what you have learned – too full and overwhelmed to take action.
It is important to remember that there is a big difference between taking in what you learned and implementing it in an effective way.
So, how do we implement these new skills after we have learned something new?
Here are some ideas on how to process and set some goals.
What is your WHY?
Taking what you have learned and putting it into action is necessary with each newly acquired skill.
Knowing your WHY and how it’s connected to God’s call for you is what will set you on the path to long-term success.
It requires intentionally looking at why this new skill is important and why you feel God has called you to do this specifically.
Because in order to implement new ideas, you have to care about doing the work, or it won’t get done.
Ask yourself some questions to get to your WHY.
- What is the problem or long-standing issue you have been battling for a while where you need guidance?
- What needs change?
- What has God called you to do in this area in the past? Is that different now?
- Why do you need to make a change now?
Prayerfully reflect on your WHY and discern God’s call for you in this area.
Always keeping Him at the center of everything you do, big or small.
Breakdance…I mean break down.
I pride myself in being a “professional student.”
I always desire to learn more.
My mind and heart break out in dance as I put to practice a different way of actively living out God’s call in the big and small ways I have learned.
When looking at implementing a new idea for long-term success, breaking it down into manageable and achievable HOWs will ensure endurance and teachability over time.
Here are a few things to consider:
- What new skill/technique/practice do you need to implement to reach your goal?
- What is your learning style? Are you visual, verbal, auditory, practical?
- How can you learn the skill most effectively?
- What can you do to practice the skill?
- What does it look like when this skill is implemented?
- How will success and effectiveness be measured?
These are a lot of questions to answer as you get moving, and it may seem tiresome to dig deeper to process your leadership.
I promise that sitting with God and yourself in the WHY and HOW will help you set the boundaries and get the support needed to create an effective game plan and lead well in this new skill.
If you want to dig even deeper into self-reflection, INCM created a leadership inventory exclusively for members. (Become a member.)
It’s a great way to grow and deepen your awareness as you intentionally work to understand your influence.
Put it into practice!
Now that you have taken the time to sit on and develop a game plan for how to effectively put to practice this new skill, it is time to do just that!
It is important to be patient with yourself as you implement new ideas.
Transformation does not happen overnight; it requires small steps and time to make a lasting impact.
You’ll also need to be patient with others as they adapt and grow alongside you.
Community is SO crucial to our growth and success.
It’s vital not only for supporting or helping us develop and implement this new skill but also for helping us to be accountable to the boundaries and game plan established.
Find people close to you who are in the mud and getting their hands dirty with you and those who have already done the hard work ahead of you!
There is always room to grow!
When we intentionally set out to learn new things to improve or grow, evaluating and reflecting on how new ideas are implemented will help us see the results and gain momentum.
As we look we learn to recognize what we are accomplishing or what we need to do better, more, or differently to get our desired outcomes.
Remember those accountability partners?
Invite them into your process to let them help you with honest reflection.
First and foremost, look to see where God is working or not, or where you feel like you need more guidance from Him to implement new ideas.
Here are a few more questions to consider:
- What have been your strengths in this implementation?
- Where have you struggled?
- What mistakes have you made?
- Where have you seen confetti moments?
Eagerly seek ways to grow through training, resources, and the wisdom of others!
When we look at everything with a teachable heart, we allow God to work and grow us in more ways than just the skill that may be focused on now.
Skills built now can be life-long and ministry-shifting for years to come.
Confetti in My Pocket
There are a few bags of confetti on my desk, on my nightstand, in random places, and between the pages of bibles, books, and journals. Oh, and sometimes in my pocket.
This confetti reminds me of the celebrations I’ve been blessed with in my life.
Some of those handfuls of confetti have come with their fair share of Kleenex as well.
But what it reminds me of most is the growth I’ve had over the years as I’ve gleaned the wisdom of the amazing leaders and teachers God has placed in my life – at CPC and through the children’s ministry community.
I’m reminded of the time that I have taken to implement wisdom and put it into practice.
And my confetti collection keeps growing.
I hope that you have a reminder, as I do, that will help you remember the wins and battles overcome so you can keep going forward in ministry.
Growth and learning are so valuable and important as we lead the next generation of kids.
And the growth must be implemented and lived out in order to do what God is calling us to do.
So it requires us to break our goals or ideas into actionable practices for the benefit of the ministries and people we serve, as well as honoring the God who gave us the work to do.
We are surrounded by a community of support and accountability as we lean on each other.
We must seek to learn and grow, actively reflecting Christ’s love and wisdom in all we do.
So keep learning and growing as you run the race God has set before you!
I’m throwing some confetti for you!
Cera Talamantes has served in ministry for over a decade, volunteering in different areas but was called most to preschool and children’s ministry. Cera and her husband, Joseluis, have two incredible kids. Their family loves spending time together making lasting memories and having crazy Uno game nights.