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3 Lies Most Youth Pastors Tell Themselves

From time to time, I’ve caught myself in a terrible lie. I start to believe something that couldn’t be further from the truth—but at the time, it actually feels like the truth itself! Here are three lies youth workers tell themselves—add a fourth in the comments below, too!

1. I’m not making a difference.
Are you kidding me? Every day you serve students in your church or ministry, you are making a difference. The problem is that we sometimes don’t see results. For a long time. Or maybe ever. So, we get frustrated not seeing instantaneous fruit or burn ourselves out trying to produce a man-made youth ministry miracle. Always remember, in the highs and the lows, you ARE making a difference.

2. I’m going to be here forever.
Here’s the reality—chances are the church you are serving at isn’t going to be the only church you serve at your whole life. But here’s the key: Serve like you’re going to be there for the rest of your life. If and when God calls you away, a) you won’t be shocked, and b) you’ll have left it all on the table. Leave with no regrets and years of faithful service as if you were going to be there for the rest of your life.

3. I can live my life one way and teach the other.
I remember early in ministry, I would find myself telling everyone else how to live and not be too concerned with the actions and decisions in my own life. Bad idea! You are producing who you are. Disciples are products of their masters (and thankfully, God’s Spirit). Don’t fool yourself into believing the lie that you can live a double life. It always catches up with you.

What other youth ministry lies do we tell ourselves? 

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Josh Griffin is high school pastor at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA. He’s the co-counder of DownloadYouthMinistry.com and host of the Youth Ministry Garage Podcast. He's authored more than 20 youth ministry resources and is the author of "99 Thoughts for Small Group Leaders" with Doug Fields. Josh is a father of 4 who speaks a little, podcasts a little, Twitters a bit, and blogs a lot. You can find him at DownloadYouthMinistry.com!