Monthly Archives: August 2012
Last month I read an article by Josh Griffin about raising kids in ministry and it really got me thinking. If you want to read his article you can by clicking here.
Obviously it has kept me thinking, since I am posting my thoughts over a month later. Truthfully this is one of the things that almost kept me out of youth ministry completely. As I “fought” with God about what He wanted me to do with my life, the fact that I grew up with several PK’s as close friends effected me.
Several years and three boys later I am very glad I finally gave in and pursued youth ministry. This picture is of me and my three boys at one of our youth events this summer. I was afraid of the negative side of them growing up as pastor’s kids, but there are some major upsides too.
They are surrounded by awesome people!
The students that are in our lives are awesome people, and I value the time my boys spend with them whether at the church, at our house, and everywhere else we all hang out. But they are also surrounded by some very awesome adults as well. The other church staff, the adult youth staff, the children’s ministry staff, and so many church members are people I love for my boys to be around.
They can be with me at work!
Yes, as a pastor I work a lot of hours. But I also realize that for many of those hours my family can be with me. If I was punching a clock somewhere else that would not be the case. I also have flexibility with my office time and can do stuff (like go on field trips) that other Dads just simply can’t do.
They are learning as they grow up!
They see and watch incredible life lessons play out in from of them. Obviously I am careful with what I expose them to, but my hope is they can learn from other’s now and avoid some of these things in their own lives later. I have told my boys more than once, (and will again) that our family does things different than some of their friend’s families. We base our decisions on the Bible and God and the role He has put us in.
For me, my youth pastor role and my Dad role mix quite a bit, and I love it! No matter if you are a youth worker or not, the role you play as a parent is HUGE, do you take it seriously enough?
This summer has been crazy for me, mainly because I have traveled a ton. During these trips (all but one of them with teenagers from our church) I really noticed how much I have changed my view regarding cell phones on trips. I thought it would be fun to try out a poll and see how you feel about cell phones on youth trips before I share my opinion, so please vote.
This summer was my 11th one in full time vocational youth ministry. Every single summer I have lead multiple trips with teenagers, and I have used every answer above at least once. On our student leadership trip to a large youth convention this summer was the first time ever I had zero rules about cell phone use. It was great!
1. I had instant communication with everyone on the trip and I always could find out where they were and what they were doing. I know why their parents want them to have cell phones now.
2. They were all student leaders and had the right focus on the trip, so no one abused it.
3. I didn’t get any “I wish I could use my cell phone” slide remarks
4. Everyone always had a camera, we got a ton of good pictures
I also realize this was a unique situation and quite possibly might not ever work out so good again.
Not just rips though, it amazes me how different I view cell phones in youth ministry now than nearly 15 years ago when I started as a youth worker. I have gone from standing on the stage making everyone turn them off to using them as a part of the message or game.
How has your views and/or use of cell phones effected your ministry?
I am really excited to let you know about my new book, Flimsy Ministry. It is set right now to be released on September 15th, and this will bring to an end over a two year process in my life. This process has included writing, editing, re-writing, submitting proposals, getting rejected over and over again, and now finally self publishing it.
I wrote this book because I felt like God asked me to. I know, every author says that, but as I have walked through this long process I have seen God’s hand in it every step of the way. Every time I needed a push of encouragement, it was there. Every time I needed help with the next step, someone would email me. I can honestly say, God has intervened over and over again, and as I move from this phase and onto sales and distribution, I trust He will continue to work.
The number one question I have gotten from people; how do you plan to market it? Honest answer–I don’t. God is going to do the marketing. Even if I only sell 10 books I feel I have fulfilled what God has asked me to do. I do hope to sell more than 10 books, but it is up to God, not me.
I have shared excerpts from the book in a few past posts, check them out.
If you want to pre-buy a copy of my book, just click below and complete the purchase. If you do you will be one of the first people to get a print copy and get free shipping!
Since mid-June my life has consisted of going on a trip, being home long enough to wash my clothes and mow the lawn, and then head off on the next trip. Summer camp, mission trip, and family vacation have all played a part in this madness, along with a few other random days and things…I’m done!
We flew back into Boise yesterday and I am done traveling for a little while, which means my summer is unofficially over. There will still be plenty of outside activity, some wake boarding, and other family fun for sure. But it does mean I need to do these three things:
1. Get back into a routine
Travelling is fun, but it is nothing like a regular routine. Even when I have been home I have not gotten my “regular” things done, like blogging for example. The break from everything has been nice, but I am ready to get back to it.
2. Get ready for fall kickoff
We are facing some big changes in our whole church, not just the youth ministry come September. The height of our attendance is September – December. In order for all the changes to be accepted well, happen smoothly, and enable God’s Spirit to move in new amazing ways this fall I (and all our leadership) need to be well prepared. The next three weeks will make or break this fall.
3. Be over relational
I have been gone a lot. Everyone else has been gone a lot. Obviously people I was on the trips with I connected with more than anyone else, but several of them I only saw during the trip. Right now I feel out of every loop, I can’t wait to get back in.
The calendar on the wall and the thermometer still say it’s summer, but for me summer is over, and I am really excited for fall! How has your summer of ministry been? When is your summer over?