Avoiding the Flame

Posted: July 2, 2009 in Balance, Development, Youth Ministry

I’m reading Len Kageler’s book, “The Youth Ministry Survival Guide”. Even though I’m no ‘newby’, I’m learning a lot from this book. Both brand new info and re-learning some things I need to do again that I have let go by the way-side.

Issue #1: Burnout. I’ve been in youth ministry for over 10 years now…full-time at my current church for over 6. I’ve been near burnout many times, but for some reason, God has lifted me up during those tough times when I have wanted to quit and leave. I fail to realize that bad and uncomfortable situations are going to happen. (I don’t deal well with those). It’s part of working with teenagers. What helps me through those?

One, a constant communication with Jesus Christ. Not only myself, but others praying for me…and know they are out there. Without that, I don’t have the mind-power, stamina, and will to do it. God is my strength.

Two, my priorities are set. Check out one of my past posts to read more about that. Once those were set and burned in my brain things tended to run more smoothly.

Three, time off! Take advantage of comp time!!! When you work a 60 hour week take some time off and relax the next. When you return from a weekend retreat, take the next 1-2 days off. When you come back from a week long missions trip take the next2- 3 days off.

Four, get a group of staff around you, whether they are paid or volunteer, to help you. Use their skills and personalities to do some of the jobs you dread doing.

I try very hard to practice these things. My heart is to be in youth ministry as long as I am able to. Here’s to avoiding the flame of burnout!


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