Just a couple weeks ago, I wrote "When Life is Easy," and described the emptiness I felt from just existing every day, doing the same work/school, eat, sleep routine. Brian and I both felt like we needed to do more. We needed to be serving, giving, something that mattered. We were helping with the youth group, but that just meant that we sat in the back row and listened every week.
Well, even as I was writing that post, God was answering our prayer. Not in the way we expected, or, even would have wanted, however. Our youth pastor resigned suddenly. He had been directing Vacation Bible School (VBS) and the youth group was actively involved with helping teachers, games, and performing a daily drama. VBS was only a few weeks away. Would we still have VBS? Who would take over the youth group?
A few minutes after we learned that the youth pastor resigned, Brian got a phone call from one of the other pastors. He wanted to meet with us the next evening after the youth group practiced for the drama.
Brian led the practice, and afterwards, the pastor explained that VBS was still on, and people had stepped up to take over the preparations. He asked us what we were thinking in regards to leading the youth group. Did we want to do it?
Brian and I had discussed it already, and honestly, we were nervous about saying yes. Did we know enough? Were we old enough? We didn't go to Bible College or get a seminary degree, were we qualified? But despite our apprehensions, we knew that we really wanted to do it. Although the situation was not what anyone would have wished for, the timing was perfect. We had asked God for a way to minister, and now there was one. We decided that if the pastor asked us to lead it, our answer would be yes.
But we're not all on our own, thankfully. The pastor and his wife have 10 years of experience working with teens, and they assured us they wouldn't try to dominate and make us do things their way, but they would be a resource for ideas, any questions, and help. Brian will be discipled one on one on a regular basis, and I'm thinking about finding a mentor for myself too. I know from experience that it's easier to pour into other people when you're being poured into.
This all happened right before my trip to Iowa, so I missed the first time Brian taught Sunday School and Sunday night youth group. The first Sunday we were back was promotion Sunday, so Brian and I got to stand up in front of the church with the youth group and talk about what we'd done in youth group over the last year and what our future plans were. That was hard! Brian did all the talking, but I was nervous for him, because we hadn't been there very long and didn't know all they'd done over the last year, and we weren't sure what our future plans were yet! Brian did very well, and it helped that two of the teens volunteered to talk about what they'd been learning too.
Last Sunday was the first time we got to sit down with all of them and talk about what they wanted to learn about and what they liked to do for youth group activities. We put together a list of service projects and fun stuff we could do, as well as some topics for Sunday School, youth group, and small group. We still have to decide when we'll do what, but first, we have to get through VBS.
That's this week. Saturday we spent all morning and much of the afternoon at church decorating, practicing the drama, working on costumes, etc. Sunday afternoon and evening was the same story. Today was the first day. Our goal was to get up to 60 kids, and we had that many already! I help with registration, lights and sound for the drama, and wherever people need me.
It was a busy and somewhat chaotic morning, but I can tell the children are LOVING our outer space theme! I hope I can get some pictures of the amazing decorations to post. And I'll post pictures of the teens doing their play over here, on the blog I doing for the youth group!
So yes, life is full to the brim right now. Brian and I are trying to exercise consistently, I'm working every day at VBS, we're making plans for the youth, I'm blogging on two blogs and working on the church website, and trying to get some writing done on the side. This weekend is our first year wedding anniversary, so we have a special weekend away planned!
I know this is a long, picture-less post, but thanks for bearing with me. By the way, for some reason, the "Comment" link isn't showing up at the bottom of my posts anymore, and I've tried unsuccessfully to get it back. But, until then, just click on "Links to This Post" or on the post title to see the comment section.
I know Brian and I would both appreciate your prayers. Please pray that we would have wisdom and skill, that we would manage our stress better, and that we would be good examples to follow. Please pray for the teens as they go through this very sudden transition, and as they help with VBS this week. Pray for our VBS too, our hope is that many kids will be positively impacted.
Thanks again for bearing with me through this long post! I appreciate time and your kind comments so much!
Labels: answers to prayer, Making a Difference, ministry, prayer, youth group