Is Flashy Ministry Okay?

Way, way back in the day I loved to make cool PowerPoints for our ministry.  It’s different now, but in 2006, for a small town, using a projector was still cutting edge. I had sound effects, custom made graphics, awesome YouTube videos (they were still brand new!), trivia questions, and all sorts of awesome slide...

How to Mess Up Well

If I wrote down every mistake I have ever made in youth ministry, I wonder if I would still have a job? Ok, perhaps that’s an exaggeration, but I have made my fair share of mistakes. Once, at the end of a great night of Campus Life, I was hanging out with a high school...

The Myth of Success

How many people come to your youth group? What is your budget like? How many conversions this year? What is your volunteer to kid ratio? How many of your kids have one of those eye-popping transformative testimonies? If you already guess it from the title, I believe that in the ministry world we often gauge...

The Power Of Presence

Like most things, the majority of what I have learned in youth ministry was by doing it the wrong way first. “Tyler” was a kid that I spent time with regularly. He was home-schooled, which was fun because I could hang out with him while other kids were busy. I picked him up early afternoon...

What Do We Do with Such Darkness?

On Friday, in the town where I live, there was a threat of a school shooting. It was found scribbled on the walls of the high school bathroom. Among racial phrases and other statements, it said, “school shootings are fun,” and “don’t come to school [on Monday].”  The police found the alleged suspect, and hopefully...

The Most Critical Key of Any Ministry

How do you get a misbehaving kid to “do better?” What if your budget doesn’t match your vision? How do you really help someone move forward in their relationship with Christ? The Secret for All Ministry My friend described to me an experience he had after a church service one day. It has always stayed...

“I’m Not a Super Hero!” – Expectations and the Youth Worker

“Well, you are the Youth Pastor, it is your job to fix her!” “Hey – you have been here two years, why hasn’t the group at least doubled by now? “Yeah, evangelism is fine…but I don’t want my kids around those kids.” There is constant pressure in ministry to meet everyone’s expectations. It can feel...

The Top 5 “Musts” of a Youth Worker

What is a Youth Worker Supposed to be Doing, Anyway? Faster than a piece of flying pizza! More powerful than a mob of over-sugared teenagers! Able to leap dodgeballs in a single bound! Look, up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a youth worker doing something crazy! What is a youth...

But…I’m Just Some Guy…

A text around midnight….”Joel, I think I’m ready to tell the world I’m gay. What do you think?” A conversation at an ice-cream shop, “I’m just waiting for my seizures to kill me. There isn’t any hope for me.” A comment loudly proclaimed to the room during prayer request time, “God doesn’t answer any prayers...

Why Would You Possibly EVEN CONSIDER This Job?

I don’t always love ministry.  No way. You are right…ministry can be a ton of fun and really rewarding.  It is a blast doing goofy games and letting the kid part of me out. It is really incredible to share a Bible story with a kid who has never heard it before.  I can’t explain...