One of the worst things we've allowed to happen in the Body of Christ is to have friendships within the walls of the church and another group of friends outside those walls...
Before we got married, my future husband Sam and I were on a date and I asked him what some of his goals were. He shared with me some awesome dreams, but one of his goals was particularly attractive to me. He said, Jeanne, until it's time for me to tie the knot, I want to be successfully single." I had never heard anyone say that before, and he really had my attention.
Guy/girl relationships during the teenage years stand among the most predominant issues most youth pastors consider to be a delicate subject, yet it remains a topic all youth pastors must not ignore. My deliberate approach always involved infiltrating their minds through one liners like, "Puppy love leads to a dog's life."
They are FOR WHAT YOU ARE FOR. And as long as you are "for what they are for," they will walk with you. They will stay in the ministry trenches with you.
These people are not for YOU, nor are they for WHAT YOU ARE FOR. Instead, they are simply AGAINST WHAT YOU ARE AGAINST. Thus, they're willing to get in the trenches and do battle with you AGAINST something.
We live in a pretty ungrateful society. From your boss, to the parents you try to please, to the students you love, rarely will you ever get all the affirmation you deserve. Let me take a minute to tell you that while I challenge you to continue to cultivate the art of affirmation in your ministry, I want to encourage you. I apologize for all the times you've waited too long to receive a decent compliment. Cheesy though it may sound, I mean it when I say that I think you're amazing, and you really are doing a great job.
My mind reeled with an entire list of things that needed to be done before 6 pm, and the day was flying away from me. Two phone appointments, a brief game plan meeting, a lunch appointment with an eagle, and then finally after resolving a conflict between two staff members, I raced back to my office. I knew I wouldn’t have time to run home and change, so I threw my outfit together and brought it with me in the morning so I could quickly get ready for the service.