What Do I Do For A Real Job?

I have not had an opportunity to blog in quite sometime. Someone asked me the other day, "What do I do for my "real" job?" When i was younger in student ministry I would would get a little hurt and offended at that question. I thought "You have no idea . . ." then I would cover a barrage of things in my head of reasons for justifying that question with an answer. As I have grown older, I have grown to cherish that question. No one other than pastors know the amount of work it takes to lead others to the cross. I was fortunate enough to have some great youth ministers in my life (Tully, Tim, and Stephen) who made it look really easy. It was almost as if all they had to do was "hang out" at church and be ready for me to get there. I thought the same thing, "What do they do all day?" I have learned that though I dislike administration, deadlines, budgeting, logistics, and teenage drama they all work together to make some AMAZING moments. So now when I hear "the" question, I think, "what a compliment" for a teen to think all I have to do is be available to him or her. That is the true definition of Student Ministry.
This weekend was the culmination of the efforts of many of my friends who are Student Pastors in the Wilmington Area. Each year we take our youth groups to Fort Caswell for a weekend Disciple Now. I would like to explain why everyone loves it, but to be honest I just can't. You have to experience it. Jonathan Cockrell and his team at Scott's Hill Baptist took the lead by making our Worship experience truly amazing. Everything was done in hopes of bringing students to a deeper understanding of who God is. Don Vigus and the leaders of First Baptist Wilmington handled the huge task of making sure everyone got fed. Brenda Penny and her crew from Masonboro Baptist Church assisted with Registration as they do so well every year, and I made sure we all had a bed to sleep in. Many others had input on the weekend and some made big sacrifices for the greater good of others. That's what true ministry should consist of don't you think? We weren't 14 different churches in a building singing songs, we were one church worshiping one God while he dealt with all of us on an individual basis.
Our Student ministry has undergone many dynamic changes as some students graduate to our college ministry while others whose family don't go to church at PVBC find a home in our group. Our students are hungry to do what God has for them but are under such attack from outside forces. This weekend was a chance for them to see that they are not alone. They have God and each other. I have not seen a group of students get this honest in awhile. I am so excited to see what will happen next. All I know to do is keep them under the cross!