24: A Sunday in the Life of a Youth Pastor

We had an extrordinary day of worship yesterday.  My plan was to get to the church a little early in order to put the finishing touches unto Sunday school at 8am here at the church.  When I was rolling in, I noticed way more cars than normal (since I’m normally about the only one here at that time).  Then I remembered…prayer breakfast!  That was a great thing since I was hungry.  So I skipped into the gym, got me some biscuits, gravy, chocolate gravy even, and and about a gallon of coffee…to start my day off right!  There our worship Pastor, Brandon, did a fantastic job of addressing our men on being the leaders of worship in the church.

Right after that I went over to the student building (which was freezing cold because of the temperature change and no one got to the thermostat yet).  Sunday school went very well.  I was pleased.  Our high school students went off to their small group class rooms to discuss the book they are reading together – “The Grace and Truth Paradox” by Randy Alcorn.  They read the first two chapters which encourage believers to live like Jesus – a life FULL of both grace and truth (John 1:14).  Our middle school students stayed in the student building with me (poor things) as we studied an overview of the doctrine of humanity.  During that time they were taught that they were created in God’s image, that being created in God’s image ultimately means to be like Christ, and the way to reflect God is to rule rightly (Psalm 8, Hebrews 2:5-9).

I left Sunday school early as the students were discussing since I had to get over to the main auditorium to change for baptisms.  We had 6 baptisms this Sunday morning!  We do baptisms at the very start of our worship service…as soon as the countdown timer clicks down to zero.  About the 4th baptism was the biggest guy of the day getting baptized.  When I brought him back up from the water in his baptism, a wave of water sloshed over the baptistry glass and got several of our choir members below soaking wet.  That may have been the first sprinkling in our baptist church ;).

Our pastor then preached a phenomenal message from John 6 on the feeding of the 5 thousand.  I can’t even tell you how blessed we are to be under his preaching!  I’m afraid that most pastors think of a topic and then go looking for a text.  Not our pastor.  Our pastor comes to a text, asks himself what God is saying in the text, and then finds the topic from the text…how it should be done!  We then had a few join our church that morning.  After the service, a family asked me to eat with them at a sub shop.  I gorged myself with a delightful italian sub.

That afternoon I met with some students about the possibility of starting a new leadership program by placing them (seniors in high school) in our middle school Sunday school classes as student-leaders.  They loved the idea.  Then I went over to drama practice to watch the ministry warm up for their big drama in this Wednesday evening’s student worship service.  It’s gonna be crunk.  We’re going to try to video tape it and put it on youtube.

We then had our evening worship service.  You’ll never believe this.  Listen to these circustances:  First, our senior pastor was gone for the night.  Second, we had a Gideon speak and pretty much ask for money for their ministry.  Third, our worship pastor preached a mini-sermon all about Jesus during the invitation time because he knew that there were two Mormon elders sitting in the back for that service.  AND fourth…a couple came down and joined the church.  I’m thinking in the history of the Southern Baptist church, those events have never all happened at once!

After the service I met with our KTL guys.  These guys are anywhere from 8th grade to seniors in high school.  Many of them are called into full-time ministry, and some of them are just natural spiritual leaders.  I met with them for about an hour and 15 minutes.  For the first 20 minutes I called a bunch of my youth pastor buddies (without warning) and asked them to encourage our guys to be leaders in 60 seconds or less.  Then we studied two chapters on the essential qualities of leadership from J. Oswald Sanders’ book “Spiritual Leadership.”  We spent most of our time on the qualities of discipline and vision.  It was such a blast vision-casting with them about what our student ministry could look like in 5 years.

Whew, and that’s a wrap.  That was my Sunday.  So, how was yours? 🙂

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