EF Youth Ministry
Empowering leaders of the next generation.
I remember the moment I realized I was old.
I was riding in the car with our Chinese exchange student talking about a Facebook post that I recently uploaded when all of a sudden from the back seat I hear Harry say, “Facebook is for old people. No one young uses it.”
That was it. That was the moment where I realized I was old and out of touch…
So let’s get to my number 5 thing on my list I’d do differently. I loved spending time with teens. I loved our weekly gatherings, our trips, our events, our conferences we attended. I even loved the all-nighters. Youth Pastors are probably the only people in the world who love all-nighters!
But if I could go back and do something differently… and here’s #5… I’d make sure to spend more time with parents.
Our culture often squanders this strategic window of opportunity for development altogether.
Growing up, I was never exposed to a rite of passage experience. Yet, when I read about them in shaping books such as Raising a Modern Day Knight by Robert Lewis and Fathered by God or Wild at Heart by John Eldredge, I was intrigued to learn more.
I've become convinced that Danny Silk's statement is absolutely true,
"Manhood is born into a man, while masculinity is poured into a man."
“…The things that left the biggest impression on me from my youth pastor had nothing to do with his time in his office…”
ESPN made popular the Top 10 sports plays. A local radio station plays The Hot 100 every Sunday. Facebook and websites are always tempting us with lists that have the 10 Best Movies, 10 funniest fails and 10 cutest cat moments. You can find a large amount of podcasts and blogs that boast 12 (or 10, 5 or even 1) rules for life.
For a long time leadership has been understood as having an important title, which then provides the authority to lead. This understanding means we can’t lead until we are the top dog. I believe nothing is further from the truth. Leadership is defined as influence. Influence is the capacity to impact someone else’s character, thoughts, and behavior. This means that regardless of title or job description, we have the opportunity to lead others.
Being discontent in our ministry is often the result of wanting our idea of our ministry/church, not our real ministry/church. But God has not given us an idea or an image. He has given us a people, a church body. It is only in the realness of another that we will find completeness and contentedness.
I want the reflection of my life to be straight paths, paths of truth, paths of forward motion, and paths of fruitfulness for God's kingdom. If my life reflects what is in my heart, then I need to take time to reflect on what is happening in there!
Don’t forget about those people when it comes to gratitude. Take a minute and think about someone deep in your organization who you can send a thank you note, a text, or even better a phone call. That would really shock the old lady who sits in the back. Who knows where your ministry would be without her...
Generation Z has the average attention span of 8 seconds! They are growing up in a time where they are being served information from several levels and angles. They have adapted and can quickly sort through and assess an enormous amount of information.
I submit that there is a big difference between planning for problems and having a plan to deal with problems. We understand that problems and challenges are inherent when humans are involved. But rather than expecting the worst as an inevitability, we believe for, pray for, work for, and expect the best.