How would you define a tough-thick skinned youth pastor?
As a small church youth pastor we are taking blows every week from:
other youth pastors
If someone tells you how it is (which is the truth) will you hear it?
What will you do? argue? take it? leave it? bit your tongue? go over the top to prove your point?
Will you really listen to the kernel of truth?
I believe that every criticism has a kernel of truth in it.
If a parent and their student simply don’t like you (and they are a vibrant part of your church) are you going to feel insecure and panic?
True courage shows when it is tested.
In the ancient world, Greek soldiers would train for the first 18 years of their life in order to be a great and virtuous Greek solider. However no one assumed if a Greek solider was courageous until he fought and survived an intense battle. Essentially the solider didn’t have courage until he survived and thrived in the battle.
A soldier had courage when he could show that he had scars and battle wounds from his past war experiences. He knew that these battles made him stronger and more courageous. So it was encouraged to go to battle because the Greek soldiers knew it would keep teaching them what it means to be brave and how to exercise the trait of courage.
It is very interesting watching youth pastors deal with conflict and high problematic situations. You can tell a lot about someone’s character when their ministry is getting the best of them.
I think a brave youth pastor is a wise pastor.
A courageous youth pastor has a strong will and is highly motivated.
A courageous youth pastor can take beatings and get right back up and laugh.
A courageous youth pastor knows his/her enemies and listens to them.
A courageous youth pastor knows when to be a doormat and when to be Donald Trump.
A courageous youth pastor does not talk about how he/she feels, but talks about what he/she thinks.
A courageous youth pastor looks for the approval of God and not of others.
A courageous youth pastor does not let problematic circumstance get in the way when he/she does youth ministry.
A courageous youth pastor doesn’t let his/her personal issues get in the way of how he/she does youth ministry.
A courageous youth pastor engages in the spiritual warfare with their students.
A courageous youth pastor moves with compassion and composure while not being reactive, but responsive.
Being a youth pastor is tough and a brutal job. Why do you think youth pastors bail after 9 months?
We have to be tough as nails. Unfortunately the youth pastor who exemplifies the themes of “Christian nice” will not make it in youth ministry. If you cannot take beatings and get back up in a quick fashion, you should get out of youth ministry. Stop taking everything so personally and getting all offended. It is not worth it. We have to take hits every which way and not let them get in the way with what God has called us to do. Take, withstand, harness, and confront the abuse.
A courageous youth pastor knows that every critique is a test of their courage.
Be strong. Be courageous youth pastors! Keep fighting for the Kingdom and the vision God has given you in your youth ministry.