I started helping with the youth group a few years ago. I never had a “calling” or anything. I did get a phone call though, asking if I would help out. I had a good experience with my own youth group when I was a teen and knew there was value in showing up as a solid in a kid’s life, so I agreed. I had no clue what God had in mind.
Eventually, I came to a place in my life where God invited me to go deeper. It was either accept the invitation, or continue living in fear and brokenness. I was sick of the latter option, so I said yes to God. Sounds cute, right? Well, it didn’t feel cute. It mostly felt like stepping off the edge of a cliff. The best part though, was where I landed.
During this time, all areas of my life began to change, because God was changing me. My only part in this transformation was to say yes to Him and allow space for Him. So, along with everything else, Youth Ministry changed. God ever so gently said, “let’s take a look at a few things, and then I can show you a better way.” He showed me how Youth Group had really just been all about me. I always cared about the kids as much as I could, or knew how to, but I wasn’t really free to LOVE them. Monday nights, my thoughts were filled with things like “do the kids like me?” or “am I cool enough?” and “I need to think of something really awesome to say, so I sound really good.” Wow! Even though it stung a little to acknowledge this part of me, a part that I tried to keep buried down deep was revealed, and I am thankful God revealed it. I’m also thankful that God is big enough to still work through us, even when we are right in the middle of our “junk”.
True to His word, God showed me another way. When I let go, and allowed Him to be in control, allowed Him to love me, everything shifted. God has given me a heart for these teens. I absolutely know it’s God’s love, because it’s something I could never create on my own. Daily, I place this ministry in His hands. He does the work! I get to show up and be blessed by Him.