Optimism and Realism in Youth Ministry

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If you’re going to do youth ministry for any length of time, there are two perspectives you need to balance. First off, you need a good amount of optimism–a passion for seeing life change and believing that God can change anyone.

But you also need a dose of reality, realizing the truth of brokenness in the world and our own limitations. Because sometimes students come to Christ, and sometimes they walk away. Both optimism and realism are needed if you’re going to have longevity in ministry.

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Laughing At Our Sin

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I’ve been thinking lately–which I know might be a dangerous thing–about the issues we all have. This all happened after I counseled some of our students who told me they were ‘struggling’ with sin.

We talked about Scripture and Jesus and still felt like we were back at square one. I thought about what sin means if you’re in Christ. Being in Christ means you have been set free. And freedom is something to take joy in.

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Graduations and Transitions and the Bittersweet nature of it all

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It’s that time of the year again. The fateful season of graduations and farewells and transitions and the beautiful, but bittersweet reality of moving on. It’s the same dynamic every year, and yet it continuously catches me by surprise. Transitions are never easy, but they are a vital part of life.

In youth ministry, we simultaneously celebrate and mourn during graduation season. As hard as it is to say goodbye, we also celebrate the reality that the future is here and it’s time to embrace it.

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Pace and Sustainable Youth Ministry

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We all have a workload threshold. Even the most focused down-to-business-type-A-workaholics out there have a point of exhaustion. The pace at which we operate in life, and especially in youth ministry, matters a ton. Burn out helps no one, and it is our responsibility to preserve our health.

Sustainability is a good thing. Ultimately, the pace of our lives and ministries are up to us to structure and maintain. The question is how do we do this? How do we maintain a sustainable pace in ministry?

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