So you’re a Youth Pastor! :o) if you stumbled onto this page from a google or wordpress search I just wanted to tell you that I am praying for you! I have a feeling that there are a lot of hurting and lost youth pastor‘s wives, female youth leaders & pastors, and even a few husbands out there who are looking for any kind of encouragement on life as a youth pastor…. maybe quite a few who at times are lost in their “job description” and life description while trying to serve God as youth leader. I wrote specifically to the youth pastor’s wife here: The Youth Pastor’s Wife (Read here)https://bayareamomma.wordpress.com/2013/04/23/the-youth-pastors-wife/
AS a youth pastor, maybe you feel like my husband and I did: The nights of complete exhaustion from being drained spiritually and mentally after counseling someone who was so lost. Sometimes from loving on youth even when you didn’t feel like it. Remembering that this job didn’t actually “pay” you much or anything. Time and effort spent serving in things that may never even be seen. The truth, LOVE will carry you. YOU loving God, Receiving God’s love for you and GOD giving you love for people.
We actually LOVED being youth pastors, and did it over 15 years. If you are a youth pastor – YOU MUST LOVE YOUTH.
But what if you have “lost that loving feeling?”
If you don’t LOVE the people you are serving- you have two Godly options:
1st option: -Ask God for HIS love for them and then CHOOSE to love them with His AGAPE love….PRAY for your youth! By the way, when you pray for people= God’s love begins to develop in your heart towards who you are praying for. So Please take time to pray for those around you, your leaders, your youth. Prayer connects you to the heart of the father…. and gives you compassion and love for (HIS) people.
2nd Option- Recognize that your grace and lifted and move to another ministry- whatever you do, Keep serving in the house of God.
For me, There were great days and there were rough days. At the end of the day: God has called you to love people and love Him no matter what your “spiritual ministry or title” is. I just want to encourage you to run to the one who can be your rock at all times. Determine to be close to Jesus. All the rest will fall into place.
We ministered to youth who came from every background and almost every situation. From those who cut themselves, did drugs, were raped, sexually molested, sexually confused, sexually addicted, stripped, prostituted, depressed, suicidal, sad, angry, got pregnant, had abortions, fatherless, homeless, parent-less, in the system, I could go on. I have seen the salvation and miracle working power of our God who has turned around the lives of soooo many young people.
I sometimes sit back and just smile at all God has done, I made plenty of mistakes, but I’m glad I never gave up. …. and God never gave up on me. You are not alone.
1-Don’t give up. Don’t quit.
2-Don’t give up on people, the youth, your husband, your family, your pastors, your church. Don’t give up.
3-It is all worth your time, sacrifice and effort.
4-YOU are serving FAMILIES, not just a teenager. One day that teenage will get married and God willing, you will see FAMILIES serving God together in the house of God. You will see ones that you ministered to, teaching their children the ways of God…. their children will find themselves in youth group and you will see that you were actually a spiritual parent to the ones God gave you. They will turn around and impact many.
5-Team up with God first,
6-Team up with the amazing group of people who surrounded you- Don’t be a solo artist!!!!
Our greatest joy were the leaders around us: some we raised up and others who joined us…
7-Fight on. run to God. He will heal you & enable you to be the leader. He has called and appointed you to do this work.
8- Have a tender heart before God. Let God test you and know your heart. The enemy of our souls, may not be able to get us to stop serving Jesus, but he can certainly try to trip us up and disable our ministry with insecurities, pride, frustration, bitterness and discouragement.
9- a word to the married: Team up with your spouse- walk in agreement & communicate no matter what your roles. BE who God has created you to be and forget the titles. Women: We want our man’s attention. You wish you had more of your husbands focus and more time just for family…. GIVE It to GOD, and learn to appreciate the little things. God will take care of and bring balance to your relationship & family life if you will let him. Husbands: The best thing you can do is take time to show LOVE for your wife (unconditionally) and pray with and for her.
Married with kids: You have the privilege to be spearheading two spiritual heritage lines… your natural family and your spiritual family. The legacy you are creating is worth the effort.
Youth Pastoring is Awesome!!!!!
God is faithful and will not let you be tested beyond what you can bear, but HE will uphold you and be your anchor. Go in your own armor, but in God’s strength…. I l leave you to ponder this: : “It’s not by might, nor by power, but by MY Spirit – says the Lord. ”
Here I am praying for a youth group again for our growing church….. and praying for you that you will be strengthened in your journey.