How Youth Ministry Made Me a Better Pastor

This past weekend I got to preach to about 150 JH & HS kids at the Equip Conference here in Northern California. I had a great time talking with the kids, hanging out with the leaders and just enjoying the camp experience.

I’ve been a youth pastor for around 10 years now and while my role has recently changed to that of a lead pastor, I am so thankful for the experiences that God has given me in working with youth. Here are just a few of the ways that God has used Youth Ministry to make me a better lead pastor.

1) Youth Ministry has made me a much better preacher. It’s one thing to preach to adults, but it’s something entirely different to preach to a room full of screaming Junior High students and to win their attention.

2) Youth Ministry has made me a more compassionate pastor. Working with young people can be heartbreaking. Sometimes it’s because of their bad choices, but often times it’s because of their circumstances (i.e. divorce, abuse, etc.). Working with youth has really given me a greater love for the least of these and I think that makes me a better pastor.

3) Youth Ministry has made me more realistic about ministry. College and Seminary can make you very idealistic about how ministry should be, but Youth Ministry has a way of slapping you back into reality with over-nighters, mission trips, and Fear Factor food competitions.

4) Youth Ministry taught me a lot about authority. I’m so thankful for my experiences as a youth pastor, because they taught me how to minister as one under authority, something I struggled with a lot as a young man.

5) Youth Ministry made me a better administrator. The fact of the matter is that if you can’t handle details in youth ministry, you’re going to drown really fast. Youth Ministry helped me learn how to manage budgets, boards, and volunteers in a way that’s been extremely beneficial to me as a lead pastor.

6) Youth Ministry made me a “funner” pastor 🙂. I believe that ministry should be fun, it should be a lot of fun. Youth Ministry has taught me not to take myself too seriously, but rather to have a good time while I shepherd the flock of God.

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July 05 2011 12:51 pm | Devotional

One Response to “How Youth Ministry Made Me a Better Pastor”

  1. Bernie Andringa on 08 Jul 2011 at 8:22 pm #

    It was indeed fun Drew. Thanks for the memories.