Over the last week we’ve been meeting with youth workers and hearing from them about their ministries.Â It’s been fun and rewarding to hear what God is doing in ministries all over the country.Â I posted about some great things happening here.Â I’ve also heard some stories of things that are painful and frustrating.Â Here’s a few of the most consistent points of pain we’ve been hearing:
- Finding resources can be difficult: many youth leaders express frustration with finding a resource (curriculum, lesson plans, games, activities, etc.).Â It’s very difficult to find something that they felt met all their needs.Â The common response was to find and use several resources that added together to what they needed.
- Parents just don’t understand (just like The Fresh Prince): youth leaders everywhere are struggling with parents not viewing youth ministry as important to their kids life as school, sports, music, whatever.Â We blogged about this issue here.Â Parents don’t believe a Bible study, Sunday school class, youth group meeting, retreat, mission trip, or service experience is as important in the life of their child as those other things.Â It’s almost universal in youth ministry right now.
- Students are over-committed: nearly every conversation I’ve had in the last 2 years with youth workers involves this topic.Â Kids just have so much (too much) going on.Â Between school, jobs, sports, family commitments, boyfriend/girlfriend, and whatever else their is youth group can barely be fit into their lives.Â They have to be here, do that, finish this, attend whatever and then try to make it to youth group if they can.Â It’s really hard to develop deep relationships with students you don’t see very often.
- Money: it’s a fact of ministry life right now.Â There isn’t as many dollars available for ministry as there used to be for many people in ministry.Â And yet great youth ministry is still happening.Â People fundraise, do less, choose less expensive programs but they are still doing ministry.
What about you?Â What’s the big pain for you in ministry right now?Â We’d love see if we could help.