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Hi, I’m Zeeke Griffin.

Virginia Beach, VA

Phone Number

(432) 231-3422

Email

[email protected]

Experience

Grace Bible Church
Student Director

Education

Liberty University
BS in Christian Ministries

Church Affiliation

Non-Denominational

Years In Ministry

5 years

Personality

ENFP

Skills

Writing curriculum, leadership development, teaching / preaching, recruiting, leading worship

Tools & Software

ChurchTeams, Fellowship One, Microsoft Office Suite, Planning Center Online, ProPresenter, Text-In-Church

Personal

Single

Top 3 Strengths

Creative0%

Social/People Skills0%

Adventurous0%

Student Pastor Questionnaire Responses
Personal Info
Please share briefly how you became a Christian.
I grew up in the church, but hated it because we were there almost every day of the week. Dad was a pastor but was in and out of the house on the streets. Slightly confusing growing up, but I didn’t look too much into it. Around 4th grade, we moved out to Texas and joined this wild youth group at our church! They all had something that I wanted, I just couldn’t put my finger on it. 7th grade comes around and we end up going to this camp called Sk Ranch. While there, the next 3 summers, I had the same counselor, Rocky. In my last summer, Rocky pulled me to the side and told me that the reason he woke up and came back to camp each year, was to see my face. That to me showed me a love that I had never seen before and opened my eyes to the love I was hearing more about at our youth group That year I accepted Christ into my life!
How would you describe yourself?
  • Fun
  • Motivational
  • Flexible
  • Inspirational
  • Loving
Personality Type
  • ENFP
  • Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, Compliance
  • Enneagram 3w2
  • Strengths Finder: Strategic, Achiever, Adaptability and Competition
Tell me about some people (i.e. authors, mentors, and ministry leaders) that have had a big impact on you.
There’s quite a few on that list: Caleb Carter – a friend of mine who is one of the smartest men I know spiritually and mentally. Always challenging me and telling me the truth rather I want to hear it or not. Pastor Earl – Shoreline City pastor that just gets it and is down to earth. Daniel Edson – a friend and also a youth director, who was my TRU Camp counselor. Devon Franklin – author of Produced by Faith, a book I received at the most perfect time in life. I could go on for days, but I’ll stop there.
Parents/Volunteers
How do you plan to engage and inform parents or guardians about your ministry objectives and progress?
I am an over communicator and the best way that I’ve found to connect with parents is through their phones. It’s always on them because of their students, so they’ll always be checking it. Social media, apps that blast out individual texts at once and signs that scream, “Look this way, I’m important!”
Tell me about a time when you developed a new team of volunteers into a strong working group. What did you do?
Each year I attended the Orange Conference where they had multiple breakouts on small group leading and managing volunteers. I then took those ideas, buying some of the Orange Curriculum and put them into practice—from volunteer meetings /training to one-on-one phone conversations. The team I had to put these practices in place with were all made of people who had never worked in student ministry before, so it was a moment we all got to walk through together. Along the way, we did some hands-on learning, but by the end of it, we had multiple small groups of students who were nonbelievers, same-sex attracted, confused about life, not sure if they wanted to be Christians anymore and what was beautiful about it all, they felt comfortable to be around us and open to be themselves while learning about the gospel. That was the best team I had ever worked with.
How would you alleviate the confusion when you are communicating with volunteers and it becomes apparent that they don’t understand what you’re saying or vice versa?
Take it to the whiteboard and open up the table for everyone to share what they think it means. Afterward, connect the dots to make it make sense.
Spiritual Growth
Once you lead a student/child to Christ, how do you communicate their decision to their parents? Once a child accepts Christ as their Savior, how do you begin discipling them?
I communicate through the story of Jesus and the woman at the well in John 4. I tell the parents, “Jesus met your student exactly where they are in life and now they are at a point where they’ve grasped an understanding of where they’ve been and who they are.” After, I challenge them to become more like Christ in their daily living and encourage them to share their life and transformation stories with others as they go along. Along the way, checking in with them to see what’s been happening in life and what areas we can improve on. I know from conversations I may have with them years down the road that this approach is working. The transformation of relational evangelism is not always immediate, but the seed I/we plant is and I know God will grow and handle the rest.
As the spiritual leader of the children’s ministry, how are you going to help volunteers grow in their faith?
There are a few key books that I want to read with my volunteers personally, but outside of that, it’s getting to know your volunteers in one on one settings and periodically hosting a volunteer night. Volunteers need to be seen, heard and valued, so in order to understand where they are at spiritually, you have to start with where they are now. From there, we grow!
Ministry Growth
What is your philosophy of ministry?
Bringing heaven to earth and meeting people exactly where they are while exemplifying Christ. Revelation 7:9, John 4, Proverbs 27:19.
What was the most creative idea you introduced in your last ministry role? What steps did you take to implement that idea with leadership, volunteers, and families if applicable?
Second Saturdays! So, the church I last worked for didn’t have a person to work strictly with middle and high schoolers, basically, no one to call their own, just a bunch of volunteers. So, I stepped in and saw immediately that we needed to grow together, but not as just middle school and just high school, but as a unit. So, thus came Second Saturdays, where every second Saturday of the month, we got together to go do something fun as a whole youth group. The steps were simple; figure out what was available to do at the time that wasn’t too costly, get wufoo forms and sell it to the students, which we were pretty good at! We didn’t even have to be good at selling it though, because the students and parents were bought in after the first one.
How would you evaluate systems and structures to see if there could be improvement?
Through surveys given out to the parents and students. Not only that but selecting, within the first few weeks, a group of 4 or more students that are actively involved to be student liaisons, constantly updating the volunteers and/or youth pastor on what’s happening from their view. From there, taking it to the volunteers and evaluating how we can make it better. But first and foremost, you have to see what is constant and what is constantly changing. You evaluate from there, because you don’t want to try and fix something that isn’t broken.
Give an example of a successful outreach program or event that you put together.
Serve Em Up Saturdays – Saturdays are just the best time to do things, haha! So, we were having fun in the beginning, but we wanted to be able to have fun and serve our community. So, we came up with a few service projects to do as a youth group but also allowed the students to see where the needs were in their everyday lives because we can’t always be where they are. From there, we set Saturdays in place and made it happen! The best part is that parents were allowed and encouraged to participate, this way they got to serve together as a family. At the end of each service project, we went out to eat somewhere with whoever was available to stay.
How would you deal with a teenager in trouble?
It all depends on the situation. You have to allow them to speak on what’s happening in their lives and also know about what’s going on from others who may be closer to the situation, parents preferably (keeping the windows of communication small so that the student doesn’t feel as if their business is out in the public). From there, it’s meeting them where they are and having that one on one conversations. In every way, you want to point them to Christ, but there are also times where they simply need someone to listen or be there. So, really, that’s pointing them to Christ, showing them that he’s always there. I always keep the parent in the know if it’s a situation that is harmful to the student or someone around them.
What goals have you set in the past for your ministry area. Did you accomplish them and if so, how did you accomplish them?
  • Get To Know Parents – With this, I set in place family dinners, where I would go and meet with parents either after lunch or a random time during the week and we would simply sit there and get to know each other. Build a Volunteer Team – Yes, I did accomplish this. I normally recruit people who have gone through a lot, rather they’ve worked with students or not because students need to see the real and raw side of life (details limited of course). From there, it was having them go through onboarding and sitting in on a few student nights.
  • Create an Open Atmosphere – Yes. This was done by making sure our volunteers were on the same page as I was when it came to allowing the student to be themselves. A room without judgement, an unclosed mine and a heart that was kind. Not once has failed.
  • Create a New Budget – Probably the most boring part of student ministry, but also necessary. Yes, I did accomplish this goal. I used what was given from the previous year and revamped it to fit our future activities. The next year, I was able to eliminate certain events and then spread those funds accordingly throughout the new ministry year
What do you do to stay current with the culture of young adults today?
It actually happens randomly through students. They are constantly showing me videos or keeping me up to date with something they are involved with. Outside of that, there’s one place I can always go to, social media, rather it’s Instagram or Twitter, I’ll always have the scoop.
What do you see as some of the biggest problems plaguing youth currently?
As much as they are on it, social media. In my opinion, it’s almost one of those necessary evils to have, With everything at their fingertips, they see firsthand what’s happening in the world, which is a positive to it. On the flip side, they are also seeing EVERYTHING that is happening. Along with that, social media basically gives you everything you don’t’ have and/or want to be.
Describe what a weekend student ministry experience would look like. What multimedia components would be used to create a learning experience that makes the Bible relevant?
Friday through Sunday, I’m assuming. Well, I would treat it like a small camp function, a DNOW if you will. Friday night, we would meet up and eat together, then do some form of worship. Afterwards, I’d bring out a speaker, if not myself, someone else who could speak into the current state of our students or about the topic we gave them. I normally choose from Orange curriculum or something from Right Now media, they are usually relevant. Instagram would be my go-to for making the bible relevant.
Describe the diversity of some of the ministries with which you’ve worked. How did you go about learning and educating yourself in order to effectively reach your community?
Every church I worked at in their student ministry, started out as predominantly white. Perfectly ok with this, actually had a student tell me one year that he was glad I was black. However I’m able to be a bridge, I’m with it. With each group though, I made sure that we were all on board with being open with each other and accepting of others before we invite others around. No one wants to feel like an outsider, so you fix it from the inside so it reflects out, it is our views of people. That went with my team as well. I wanted to make sure we reflected on what we wanted to see in the group. Surely enough, each of them started inviting their friends and some had friends of the opposite race that showed up and stayed. This went beyond race.
Is there a process that you go through when choosing a platform for screening volunteers, curriculum choices?
Not exactly. Normally the church has a system in place for onboarding a volunteer. When they don’t, I simply recruit based on what the ministry needs. I’ll stand at the front of the church and greet everyone who walks in, making it know what I do and who I am. Sometimes, it’s as simple as them coming to me and saying they’ve been interested in a while and didn’t know who to talk to. Other times, it’s scoping and asking around to see who would be a good fit. Again, I send the students out to see who they would like to be with them as well.
What have you done in the past to ensure your church has a safe environment, including emergency procedures.
Learning the procedures already set in place and sharing them with the volunteers. Most of the time there’s no need to do much but to comply with the procedures and make sure the staff is aware
How would you describe the ideal relationship between senior/lead pastor and student pastor?
Space where we can be vulnerable without the fear of judgment. Being able to challenge each other in healthy ways, both spiritually and in our areas of work. A relationship where we can hang out away from the workplace and still be ourselves, not feeling a need to talk about work but simply having fun together. Accountability to the point where we immediately know something is off and/or wrong with someone, with the encouragement and boldness to step in and either speak truth or just listen and then give honest feedback about what may be going on.

References

Tana Sykes || (512) 983-0218 || [email protected]
Shea Jones || (512) 468-4279 || [email protected]
Brandon Shook || (806) 677-9968 || [email protected]
Brittany Prus || (850) 450-1161 || [email protected]

Favorite Bible Story

Mark 2:1-12

Favorite Scripture

Proverbs 27:19