By: Elijah Holbrook from Journey Church
Being a youth pastor is probably not what you expect. Early mornings, late nights, a ton of pizza, a new caffeine addiction that you can’t seem to beat, and now find yourself saying you have a ministry meeting just to grab a cup and fix your itch. Maybe that’s just me…
There’s also a new pressure of feeling like you have to be all things to everyone. Especially when it comes to this word: perfect. You feel like you have to be perfect for students and parents to think you’re successful.
But who told you that you had to be perfect?
I get it. With social media and parents trying to tell you how to run your student ministry, it’s sometimes hard to operate how God created you to be and how the Holy Spirit is leading you.
One thing I’ve learned over the years is that God never called us to be perfect. That defeats the purpose of what Jesus did on the cross. What He has done is called us to live a life of excellence.
I set a challenge for myself in 2023, and I also want to ask you to take the same challenge:
Stop striving for perfection.
Breaking this mindset might take a while because to you and the world, perfection and excellence are the same thing.
But, let me share something that will not only help you but also your students. In reality, excellence comes from a deep and personal relationship with God and from a deeper understanding of Him. Excellence is a byproduct of this understanding.
Alternatively, perfection comes from a place of insecurity that leads us down a path of pride. Perfection allows us to place ourselves above God. Perfection tells us that grace doesn’t apply to us, creating a shadowing shame. Perfection never allows grace to move in our lives which means we never become who God has called us to be. Why? Because you become so focused on living up to an image that God never gave to us.
When we fix our focus on our relationship with Christ and live a life of excellence, grace is finally allowed to do its job. Living a life of excellence allows us and our students to continue to walk the path of salvation and purpose and embrace our name given by God.
So, student pastor, student leader, I want to ask you a few questions:
Do you know your name?
Why are you striving?
Who told you that you needed to be perfect?
God calls you His child and He will finish the work He began in you. It will be His grace, not your striving. Rest in this truth as you continue to lead those God put in your sphere.
1. Feed loves to help equip and resource youth pastors in the local church. Reach out to [email protected] to find out how they can partner with and support you in your ministry