It’s That Time Again…

…no, not New Year’s.  Although it is a new year, I’m looking at another familiarity.

It’s time to remember that I can’t do ministry on my own.  I’ve been in youth ministry for a long time – and in some respects, it’s like riding a bike.  When I first began learning the two-wheeled wonder, I had some crashes, some ugly starts and stops, and more than my fair share of bumps, bruises, and bandages.  But true to legend, the more I rode – the better I got.  Soon – I no longer gave it a second thought when I hopped on my bike.  I didn’t have to.  It was auto-pilot for me.  It’s not that I ever lost respect for the bicycle or the injuries sustained at its influence.  I was just confident that I had what it took to ride well – and any impending injury would be worth the ride.

Sometimes doing youth ministry is like that – it’s not that I’ve ever lost sight of the fact that Jesus works through me – or the holy calling that is youth ministry.  I’ve just become confident in my call and the worth of any bumps or bruises obtained in its pursuit.

There have been times, though, when even my experience wasn’t enough to keep me from teetering on two wheels!  Changes in venue or responsibility or life-stage…they always serve as a reminder that I am NOT on auto-pilot here.

2011 will be one of those moments.  And though I’m trepidatious and uncertain about my own ability to ‘ride this bike’ – I never doubt for a second that God knows all my days – planned out since before the day I was born.  He saw the end of this stage in my ministry before I saw the beginning.

I am stepping in to lead our church in the absence of a senior pastor. And God is reminding me that…

A) His plan for me is good (even when I question that.)  Romans 8.28

B) I need only take the next right step – I don’t need the entire path laid before me.  Proverbs  16.9

C) He loves His church – so this is on His shoulders, not mine. Ephesians 4.15-16

D) I can step outside my comfort zone confidently. Philippians 1.6

E) Though my job duties may change for a time, my call has not.  1 Peter 5.2-4

Thank God it’s that time again – we never ride more courageously than when we’re forced to ride without training wheels for the first time….

Author: Darren Sutton

I've been in student ministry nearly 30 years…which generally just confirms how much I still don't know. Some days I'm the pizza-eating, over-responding, teaching-on-the-fly, desperate-for-volunteers, frustrated-with-co-workers youth leader that we all are. And sometimes…I knock it out of the park. I'm everywhere on social media that you are!

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