Almost 4 years ago, I began full-time youth ministry in a local church here in NW Arkansas. This is certainly not my first go-around with youth ministry in terms of leading and volunteering. However, this is the first time I believe I am doing youth ministry in a way that pleases God and is faithful to His Word. How do I know this?
Before I arrived in Arkansas, I wrote up a Philosophy of Youth Ministry in order to get my head on straight of why I do what I do with the youth and church I serve. I wrote a summary of that here on PS23 in a past blog.… Continue reading
Hebrews opens with one of the most Christ-descriptive paragraphs in all of the New Testament,
God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they (1:1-4)
In short, Jesus is God in the flesh, the second Person of the Trinity, the Son of God. … Continue reading
“…an overseer must be above reproach.” (1 Timothy 3:2 ESV)
The biblical qualifications for a pastor are rather high and are deadly serious. Many Christians and many churches have been greatly harmed by pastors who do not meet the qualifications that God lays out for them in the Bible. Part of the reason for this is because many Christians do not actually know what to look for in a pastor and because they are often looking for the wrong things, as recent situations like this one continue to demonstrate.
The Bible is not confusing when it comes to the kind of men that should occupy the role of pastors (also described as elders, leaders, and overseers in the New Testament) in the local church. … Continue reading
One of my go to Psalms on Monday mornings when I am often tired, and grouchy, and down and utterly emotionally spent after a day of ministry is Psalm 103. When I am completely wrung out it pours into me. And when things are darker and tougher that a typical Monday morning I go often go to Psalm 103, when I am at my lowest it ministers to my soul. And the thrust of the psalm is found in verse 2 “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.” The psalm goes on to enumerate many of the benefits of a saving relationship with the Lord through faith in Christ, and to extol the character of God.… Continue reading
This month of September is going into my 5th year as a full-time student ministry pastor. It is a privilege, a challenge, humbling, and a joy. I have learned soooo much from the experience, the trials, and the older men (pastors, elders, and laymen) who have poured into me the how-to of ministry.
Now as a youth minister, I get many questions. Questions about why I do what I do with youth, what to do with rebellious teenagers, etc. But I think the overriding question I seem to get is this:
“Why do so many students leave the church (and therefore Christianity) after High School?”
This is an excellent question and one of which many a youth pastor and parent has had to wrestle with. … Continue reading