Being in youth ministry, I've had the privilege of learning a lot. And, I can honestly say out of all the things I've learned, there are some lessons that I feel will never cease to teach me.
When I started this list, I easily thought this could be a 10,000-word post, but no one would read a post that long. So, here are a few of the things I've learned that I think are valuable. I believe allowing God to grow me in these areas has made me a better youth worker.
Here are six lessons that I've learned. I believe others could learn from them as well:
1. Be flexible. Majority of our day-to-day tasks in youth ministry are very random. It isn't uncommon for my day to go from a brainstorming meeting, to a counseling session and then a hospital visit. Flexibility is one of the main ingredients to longevity in youth ministry, and it actually relieves the stress of ministry. Those who are a step-by-step, can't-miss-a-beat type of person usually don't last long in youth ministry. So be flexible.
2. Go the extra mile. Make things the best that they can be. Consider the task you are assigned as the bottom floor. When given a task or project, look for ways to save time and money. Sometimes that means making sure you don't have to make another trip somewhere or completing the whole task instead of just the part you where assigned.
3. Attitude is everything. It is super easy to get caught up in the craziness of ministry especially when you are seeing the less attractive side of ministry for the first time. It's important that you keep an attitude of thankfulness. This will require you to look past the craziness of seeing the not-so-attractive side of ministry, and focus on the life change that's taking place. Also, now that you are on the other side, you need to be aware of an attitude of pride and arrogance. It's impossible to know and learn everything there is to know about the ministry during your time there. Keep a learners attitude of humility.
Dr. Mark Rutland's
National Institute of Christian Leadership (NICL)
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