Beyond excited to get my hands on Brian Berry’s first book - As For Me and My [Crazy] House. Looks so perfect for youth workers with growing families. As a father of 4, I can relate. Can I get an amen?

Serving in Christian ministry should be a life-building, life-giving, life-inspiring experience for leaders, spouses, and families. So why isn’t that always the case? In this book, youth pastor Brian Berry pours out his thoughts on why it’s so tough to build a healthy life, a healthy marriage, and a healthy family in the midst of ministry craziness. He focuses on the three best gifts you as a youth worker can bestow:

  • The best gift you can give your marriage is a healthy self
  • The best gift you can give your family is a healthy marriage
  • The best gift you can give your community and ministry is a healthy family


I was asked by a friend recently what three gifts any youth pastor would want from their senior pastor. First of all, I thought, “Huh, I just had Christmas and a birthday and I didn’t get ANYTHING from Pastor Rick.” Then I remembered I didn’t get him anything either, or have any idea when his birthday even was in the first place. Yikes.

After that little rabbit trail, I thought about how good of a question it was, and that I should blog about my responses and ask you to weigh in as well. If my senior pastor could give me 3 things (and it wasn’t something like an iPad, because I’d gladly take that, too) I would want these:

More than anything else, I want to be given the leadership of the ministry. I want to be trusted with the vision and decisions of the ministry. I want a senior pastor who believes in me and trusts me to follow God’s Spirit and his/her leadership in accomplishing that vision.

Loyalty equals longevity. If you want me to stay in the trenches for the long run, stick with me. I’ll probably need your defense (hey, I’m a youth worker) and covet your partnership and friendship in the heat of the spiritual battle. A quick way to run a youth pastor out of town is to be disloyal.

I hesitate to put this one out there on the list – but it is a HUGE gift to be well-taken care of as a pastor/family and a HUGE gift to have money for scholarships and programming. I put it last for a reason, but also included it for a reason, too. Take care of your people and they will take care of your people.

My hope is that you as a youth worker read this, nod your head and add another “gift” in the comments. That way, when your senior pastor Googles their way to this post, they’ll have lots of ideas and put one or two of them into practice.

What is another amazing gift a senior pastor can give their youth worker?


Thinking of getting a gift for your volunteers or students this Christmas? Maybe you stumbled on the blog and you’re looking for a gift idea for the youth pastor at your church. Or … no one is thinking about you so you will solace yourself with gifts. No judgement here, just a recommendation of a place to start your search. Check out the new gift category on Simply Youth – some solid deals in there, too.