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Never Lose Hope, Friends.

 —  November 5, 2013 — 4 Comments


People are messy. Life is messy. Church is messy. Ministry is Messy. Youth Ministry is Messy.

So it’s no wonder we get it wrong from time to time. It’s no wonder that there have been flaws in our attempts to use messy people in messy churches to minister to teenagers. So today, I was saddened to see another youth ministry book dedicated to discussing what’s gone wrong in the church’s attempt to reach students. I think I’ve reached my tipping point, my “we suck” threshold, folks. I’m over it. Youth ministry is messy, yes, but I refuse to believe it’s completely messed up. I have tremendous hope that what you and I are dedicating our lives to is actually making a difference. And despite accusations of being overly optimistic, chipper and pollyannic, I don’t see my hopeful attitude as akin to the band continuing to play while the Titanic sunk.

HOPEFUL. That’s my new word to describe my attitude toward, and outlook concerning, youth ministry. Synonyms would include confident, positive, buoyant, expectant, sanguine, bullish, cheerful, lighthearted and optimistic. Yep, when it comes to youth ministry I am ALL of those things. And I hope you are, too!

Read, sharpen your mind, don’t put your head in the sand, and listen to people who may have insights you don’t.

But never lose hope, friends.

Kurt Johnston

Kurt Johnston


Kurt Johnston leads the student ministries team at Saddleback Church in Southern California. His ministry of choice, however, is junior high, where he spends approximately 83.4% of his time.

4 responses to Never Lose Hope, Friends.

  1. Refreshing. Thanks Kurt!

  2. It does get tiring. It drives me crazy when we get pulled aside in person or read something that says, what you need to be doing in Student Ministry is x, y, & z. So many times it’s things that we are already doing or have figured out already that it doesn’t work.

  3. It’s a vicious circle.

    Really we should be overjoyed if we truly reach just one. Just one that now believes. Just one that turns their life around. Just one that we know we’ll see in eternity.

    Instead we worry about just one more.

  4. Needed to hear this, thank you.

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