Excuse #4 I don’t have time
Really? Are you sure about that? I bet you do. Let me speak to the two kinds of youth workers who may be reading this
If you are a volunteer/bi vocational youth worker
You have quite a task. You have minimal amount of time to get a lesson or message ready all the while working your other job. You love the youth ministry but you don’t feel like you have enough time to do anything well. I’ve been there. What can you do?
You are doing all you can. I would not feel one ounce of guilt because you can’t do it all, but the key is doing what matters most with the time you do have.
When I was part time/bi vocational, I wasn’t great at balancing life/work, it was just work. If I had it to do over, I would spend my time
- connecting more with students outside of church
- calling/texting students to just say hi and ask for prayer requests
- accepting my limitations and embracing God’s grace
If you are a bivocational/volunteer youth worker, you can’t necessarily do more but you can be more.
Listen to a few youth ministry podcasts to and from work like After 9, DYM, and my podcast, Youth Ministry in Motion.
You could watch some YouTube vids from Stuff You Can Use or my channel HERE instead of mindlessly scrolling cat/baby videos and memes.
The best way to use time, is intentionally.
Remember, even more important than your youth ministry knowledge is your ability to be available. If you’re available to talk, eat, and do life with students, you won’t have to worry about having enough time to do stuff that doesn’t matter, you’ll be investing your most important minutes face to face or text to text with kids. That’s the stuff that matters.
If you are looking for lessons and material to make life a little easier, I do have a store packed with lessons that last 4-5 weeks.
To you who are full time (some of you)
Think about your day, your habits, your time wasters. You are privileged. You have the joy of serving full time and yet you waste tons of time on stuff that will not matter on earth or in eternity. You waste so much time on frivolousness and trivia that you become unaware that you’re losing kids, losing momentum, and losing credibility.
You know the phrase “Rome burned while Nero played his fiddle.”? Well, it’s possible that you are, unnecessarily, burning time off the clock of our youth ministry careers to pursue stuff that, in the end, will not matter. This roller coaster road trip could end tomorrow or in 10 years, you don’t know. This is why time is so important and should not be wasted.
How To Kill This Excuse: Discipline
Now, if you’re happy with a lifestyle where you get to snub your nose at time, go all in, enjoy. But, if you’re complaining about your ministry, your lack of kids, your lack of vision, the lack of passion, please don’t use the excuse that you do not have enough time. You have control over that and you know something has to go.
bingeing Netflix/Hulu etc.
Playing on the computer
Spending so much time playing golf
Watching so much T.V.
Pick your poison. I know all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy and I am not against play, fun or any of the things I have listed above. For a time, a season, you may have to put some of this away so you can work on a skill you need such as
Take college course in person or online
Watch Youtube videos about a youth ministry subject
Join a community where you can build your skills
Seek out a coach for extra help and encouragement
Take a class at the Y or the library
There are options available to us all, the question is whether you will accept the discipline to do it.
You can’t make excuses and make a difference at the same time.
Redeem your time. Buy it back, or if it’s been kidnapped, go Taken on it and get it back at any cost.
On to Excuse #5 I Am Powerless