As I write this at the beginning of January, I ponder my gym. It has been over a year since I joined, and I suppose I didn’t notice last January due to being so new myself. But it is packed. I see the faces on the new members, as they’re learning new machines and figuring out their routine. I notice how crowded the stairwell and track is when I try to run up and down and around many more people than normal. I notice that for many, the gym experience is new. Maybe this is the ideal time for youth ministry as well, as you begin the year with a “new,” or at least, re-“new”-ed, focus on relationship building, and more importantly, teaching and growing God’s Word.
This month, I take a couple of those “old” favorites, and make them “new”! Use them as idea starters for devotions and studies. Use them as games and events for your winter/spring celebrations. May this New Year continue to be a blessing for your ministry!

Type/Purpose: Board/Card Games

Materials: Board Games, preferably ones that are well known by your group.

Set-Up: Set up the board games as usual, with enough players at each one.


  • Begin games as normal.
  • Every three to five minutes, yell “switch.” Players will continue playing their current game, but will rotate one spot clockwise, taking the place of the player on their left.
  • Continue play until the games are over.

Teachable Moments:

  • What was it like playing the game in a new way?
  • Describe how it was switching to a different player? How did it affect your strategy?
  • How might this be similar or different to life?