This week I’ve been busy. I’ve had more meetings than I usually do. While this normally drains me, this week is different. Instead of meetings about budgets, strategies, mission statements and events, this week I’ve been plain old pastoring. You remember pastoring, right? It’s where you spend time listening to people, talking about real life, opening scripture, laughing, sharing stories and praying.
You know at the end of my life I might be ashamed about the amount of time I spent looking for the perfect background for my talk slides. I might regret the amount of time I gave to searching for the perfect video clip. But I don’t think I’ll regret the amount of time I spent listening to and praying for people.
What are the basics skills of youth ministry? If you go by the blogs and books out there, you might get the impression that quality youth pastors have good time management skills, know how to prepare and deliver an engaging talk, have creative worship spaces and have a solid ministry strategy. While these are good things, they will not make you a true shepherd of people.
Pastoral care is the bread and butter of youth ministry. It always will be. Unless we are willing to listen to people, spend uninterrupted time with them and shepherd them toward the feet of Jesus, everything else will be busy work. No amount of flash and glitz can make up for good old fashioned pastoring. The way that happens is by giving your presence to other people.
The good news is that pastoral care multiplies itself. The burden isn’t on you to make sure that every teen in your ministry is personally cared for by you. Instead, when you pour into a few leaders, students and parents they will be able to do the same for others. They will follow your example and look for ways to listen, pray, and encourage other people.
I know we all know this. I know that we all got into ministry because God gave us a vision for life-on-life change. It’s just that we need to be reminded of it from time to time. I need to be reminded of it all the time.
What about you? How will you make sure that pastoring people stays at the heart of your ministry? I promise, you won’t regret it.
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://www.theyouthministryblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/LibickHawaiiChristmasPhoto.jpeg[/author_image] [author_info]Kevin Libick is a Middle School Pastor living in Fort Worth, TX with his wife Kara and her two cats. He is a novice banjo picker and expert Hawaiian food eater. Kevin loves to connect with other youth workers and equip them to live out their calling in God’s Kingdom. Connect with Kevin on Twitter: @kevinlibick[/author_info] [/author]