Don’t worry, I don’t really have two hundred thousand reasons to be hesitant about youth ministry. Well, if I were to stretch each one out and count each sentence as a hesitancy, maybe I would. But I won’t make you suffer through that.
So here is just a laundry list of the other things that give me pause when I think about my future:
• I’m a girl. Let’s be honest: we live in a male dominated world. If the boys are having fun, the girls will usually follow. I’m not trying to be antifeminist; I’m just saying that at this point that’s how it is. So being a girl means that guys won’t take me quite as seriously. And if guys aren’t on board, girls are less likely to jump in with both feet. So I’m supposed to be a female youth minister?
• I don’t have facial hair. What kind of youth minister doesn’t have at least a goatee?
• I’ve seen the way a few churches do things, but I really can’t envision my own ministry yet. I know some of what I want and don’t want, but the big picture isn’t there yet.
• I hate money. I do not want to work on creating and maintaining a budget. I don’t want to do fundraising and I don’t want to have to be the one to tell parents they have to foot a large part of the bill for the mission trip.
• Also, I’m not into politics at all. You can ask my family. It’s not that I will not stand my ground on important issues and it’s not that I am willing to water down Jesus’ message, but I believe that a church should avoid factions and individualism and division in general. I know it will happen. My prayer is that I can stay out of it as much as possible and that I never end up in the middle. Chances of that are slim, but I really, really, REALLY do not want to have to deal with drama and disagreement in an environment in which I am striving to build stronger relationships with Christ and with one another.
• It’s difficult to get a job when so many churches want someone with experience. So the typical question arises: how do you get experience if you need experience in the first place?
• I’m not super detail-oriented. I’m organized for the most part and can be on top of things, but if there is a choice between building relationships and doing an independent task, it’s not even a question.
• I want to get more kids into the church, but I’m not going to stoop to gags and stunts and gimmicks to bring them in. My hope is that the message, the relationships, and the love will be enough. Not to say I won’t be having fun and playing some games and such, but I want it to be about the deeper stuff, too.
• I don’t speak any other languages. Not necessarily a problem in some parts of the country, but a huge problem in border towns or urban churches in places that end in “-town” (e.i. Chinatown, Germantown) or start with “little” (little Mexico, little Italy) where culture still holds tightly to its language.
I have spent the past 5 posts telling you about why I am not qualified to be a youth minister. Fun, wasn’t it?
And now I could list for you all of the reasons why I am qualified: my skills, my attributes, my personality traits, so on and so forth. But as I am continuously discovering, I have spent too long being an arrogant college student. And what’s worse, I couldn’t even see my own pride. Therefore, I will not make you suffer through that.
Just believe me when I say that for every reason why not, there are at least two reasons why. Maybe I can’t see all of them, but I am putting my faith in God and trusting Him to lead me.
“We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the master builder and the worker. We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future not our own. Amen."
Today I turn around
Stop running away from Him.
Today I listen
And run toward.