Youth Ministry is like Dog Years (multiply by 7).

Today is the 4th Anniversary of my journey with Youth Dynamics. And while 4 years doesn’t seem significant in relation to my 27 years of youth ministry, it is. Amazingly, 4 yrs is longer than I was on staff at Real Life, longer than I had Reach the Campus, longer than I coached youth pastors with Life On Life. In fact, only my tenure at New Life was longer. At each new job, I honestly always believed I would stay longer, kinda like I thought I would marry every girl I ever dated, but it just didn’t always work out they way I had hoped. As youth workers, often we are not in control of our own destiny. In a couple of situations, pastoral transitions were the impetus for me leaving, in others it was lack of finances; once it was a boss that had a different vision for my life than the Lord and I did. All but once I felt a sense of completion, like I had finished the work the Lord has asked me to do. But for the last 4 years I have been the guy in charge, and this seems to be a game-changer. Never again will change be foisted on me without my approval. I can stay as long as the Lord wants me to. This job is so complex, so diverse and feeds so many of the passions and drives the Lord has placed in me, I can see myself being here a long time. That being said, I never want that sense of comfort lull me to sleep. I’ve seen pastors stop working hard, who golf more than they should, who stop dreaming; who seem to be coasting.

This morning, I finished reading, “Unbroken” the fantastic true story of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner who was later a POW in WW2, who endured unspeakable atrocities. His story and stories like it, inspire me to keep going, to never give up. In track our coaches always used to say.. “run all the way through the finsh line.” Our bodies want to quit at times, but the Spirit compels us to continue. Resist the urge to pull up and coast at the end. Run it all the way through.

The mission of Christ should always compel us to work hard, to dream big and to remain focused on the prize, that is: eternity and taking as many as we can with us.

Hebrews 12:1-3 (NIV) –

12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

I hope in whatever posting the Lord has you in that you are encouraged today. That you continue to keep your resolve and your focus on the mission in front of you. And that you stay the course, all the way through to completion.



About markmoder

3 Responses to Youth Ministry is like Dog Years (multiply by 7).

  1. Veronica Tourangeau says:

    Thanks I needed that 🙂


  2. Chris says:

    Great post. Hits me where I am at right now, and pushes me to where I am headed. Thanks, Mark.


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