I love working in the yard. Many times glancing up at the sky I’m reminded that these 100+ year old oak trees have seen much more than I have. My four chickens (Gladys, Gertrude, Marilyn & Lucy) follow me around hoping I’ll stir up some kind of treat for them. In the heat of summer the native flower garden is in it’s prime. I LOVE working in my yard. It usually means I’m without my phone, my hands covered in dirt, sun shining, deciding which plants need water, along with figuring out the best height for the lawn mower. Oh, and if I may, I think blues/jazz makes for wonderful music while working in the yard. While I love working in the yard, there are things about it I don’t always love doing. The live oaks dump their leaves in the spring. I HATE raking leaves, they don’t ever seem to stop falling, I can never keep up. If I don’t get the leaves up though, the grass won’t get enough moisture, sun, and air… it won’t be green, thus the leaves must be raked! Pulling weeds. Those dandelions will be coming out soon, if you let one go – well there will be at least twenty in it’s place next year, I don’t like pulling weeds. It’s all part of it though, I guess that’s where commitment comes in.
Being a youth pastor – I LOVE IT! I have the amazing privilege of leading students and leaders into a deeper relationship with God and one another. Being a youth pastor rocks. Yes, the stories and rumors are true, we youth pastors have a fun job. I have pulled all nighters playing video games with teenagers, lead dozens of mission trips and camps, seen many students put their faith in Jesus, spent hours sipping from the Starbucks cup while listening to a leader, have owned at least ten t-shirts that I personally designed for a camp or experience, and I even get to work from home sometimes! While this is all fun and games, there are things that come with my dream job that I don’t always love and sometimes hate.
- 50+ hour work weeks
- Working on my days off
- I can’t connect with everyone, yet many expect me to
- The angry parent
- My passion for student ministry is sometimes mistaken for anger
- Expectations from others exceed or are indifferent to my job description
- I am 1 person trying to keep 300 people on the same page
- Unclogging toilets
- Firing a volunteer
- Getting blamed for why students stop attending church
- Never enough volunteers
- Hearing the story about “that one student who…”
- Tech problems and troubleshooting
- The computer never works the way I need it to
If you are a youth pastor you understand exactly what I’m talking about. If you don’t completely understand or have a new understanding of what many youth pastors go through I strongly recommend a hug or giving some sort of “thank you” to your youth pastor – they go through a lot and many times it is unseen. This kind of encouragement goes a long ways for that guy or gal that is fighting for the next generation. Doing what you love doesn’t mean you always love what you do. For me, youth ministry is just that, even though it has it’s dark hours and hard times… I love it.
What are the things in youth ministry you don’t love doing?