Ever have that feeling that something is not right? It starts with a few teens missing. Then leaders begin to show up late. Activities are no longer fun. What was once a dream has now become a chore. You wonder, “What’s going on here?” The answer:
YOU ARE STUCK IN A YOUTH MINISTRY RUT
Ruts are hard to get out of. In fact they not only slow you down but hurt your ministry. When youth ministry becomes mundane it leads to feelings of frustration and burn out. To key is to recognize it before it becomes too late.
To recognize that you are heading down the wrong path you need to:
MEASURE WHAT YOU ARE DOING
If you do not know how you are moving or growing you’ll never know if you are making progress. First question you have to ask yourself is:
What are my goals? You need to know what goals you are trying to reach. Set mile markers and deadlines for reaching them.
How am I measuring it? While counting attendance and offertory is easy, you need to know create a system that tracks life change. It might be through collecting emails. Filming testimonies.
While some goals are tangible to measure others might take a little creativity. Even if it’s not perfect look at measuring as much as you can.
REVIEW WITH THEM TEAM
You might not be the only one feeling stuck. Ask your team, especially those who are new to serving. They will have a fresh perspective. They will be able to ask questions like, “Why do we do this?”
If you cannot answer that question, chances are you shouldn’t be doing it. Get an outside perspective to help you build a core team.
TAKE TIME AWAY
Your feelings of burnout might be from overwork. Take yourself out of the equation for a little vacation. Rest, rejuvenate and then walk back in. If you are constantly working you might be too tired to truly enjoy the highs and lows of youth ministry.
ASK GOD FOR GUIDANCE
If you are feeling stuck rest in the Lord. Ask Him to guide you where it is you need to go. Do not be afraid to discern whether or not it’s time to move on. What you are experiencing might be a season or a sign that you need to go.
No one likes to feel stuck and while you might feel helpless you can always do something. Do not ignore it or work through it. Pause, rest and reflect. Be patient and trust that the answer will be revealed before it’s too late.
What advice would you give a fellow youth minister who is stuck?