What the Fluff?

When I was a little kid I use to get psyched for lunch and not because I was a fat kid, but because my mom made the best bagged lunches.  Now I get to make my own.  This morning I debated between a Fluffernutter and a PB&J.  I went with the fluff because I noticed that it had half the calories, and half the sugar that jam does.  I’m not too surprised, but jam is just something I thought would be healthier than fluff.
I know over the last few years of ministry there have been times I’ve thought one thing about ministry only to discvoer that it’s really not.  Here are a few of them:

  • Numbers Are Important – Rick Warren says, “If numbers weren’t important to God there wouldn’t be a book in the bible called Numbers.”  I’ve also heard that if student ministry is just focused on fun and not raising disciples that you are off of God’s mission, so what’s the truth?  I don’t know but just because a ministry is large doesn’t mean it’s healthy and just because a ministry is small doesn’t mean it’s not, it all depends the fruit that’s being bared.
  • You Need Younger Ministers – I’ll admit that when I see a ministry flooded with young 20 something ministers I’m a little jealous; however, I know that my ministry wouldn’t be as strong as it is without the ministers of a certain age.  I think students need healthy relationships and that can only comes from God loving people.
  • Pack the Calendar – I think it’s important to have consistent opportunities, and I think it’s important to offer variety; however, if your calendar is packed to the point with the student programming and events you have to ask yourself who’s this affecting.  Your calendar should not conflict with family time, work and most important your time with God (especially on Sundays).  We aren’t babysitters, we are ministers and we need to empower families and their teens.  

I’m sure many of us have gained wisdom over the years.  The best thing to do is serve with God in mind and not to fall to pressures or the myths that may lay out there.  When we focus on God we can create an authentic, consistent and growing ministry.

I’d be curious to hear what people have learned over their years in ministry.

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  • Brian says:

    All of these are excellent. I’ve learned not to respond to questions like “How many kids are in your youth group,” to make sure my ministry is led by older adults as well as young adults, and to realize that “activity” isn’t necessarily the same as ministry.

  • For me it’s hard not to respond to that question without feeling some sort of guilt of either not having enough students or bragging about having too many. I feel another one that I use to buy into and maybe should of mentioned is the more I work, the more fruit I produce. I think that’s why many of us ministers get burnt out.

  • michael says:

    Sometimes the things you think students will like (including my self being a student) will be the complete opposite of what they really like. Though it may not be what student leaders aim for, you sometimes have to “grasp” the students attention with the things they do like and focus it on the things they stray from.