“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer, and perfecter of faith.”Hebrews 12:1-2
You’re likely very familiar with these verses of the Bible, but sometimes, as youth leaders, we struggle to know how to live them out. Here are five practical ways to “throw off everything that hinders” and keep “fixing our eyes on Jesus”:
1. Meet with your favorite student(s).
Don’t pretend you don’t have favorites.😉Whether they’re your favorite because of their passion for Jesus, their fun spirit, or some other reason, get together with them and just share life. Also, ask how they’ve seen God lately.
2. Share stories with fellow youth leaders.
One of the best ways to remind yourself of the beauty of youth ministry is to take some time to exchange stories—fun, spiritual, or crazy—with any youth leaders you know, whether they are serving with you or serving at another church. An easy way to do this is to simply ask them to tell you a memorable story from the last year.
3. Get together with a mentor.
Meet with a trusted mentor and honestly explain to them that you could really use some prayer, encouragement, and wisdom. Invite them to remind you of the journey you’ve been on and the character of God.
4. Celebrate good memories.
Take the time to print group pictures from favorite moments in youth ministry and put them on a mirror or in a car where you’ll see them often. Also, try wearing a T-shirt from a youth event, placing mementos from important moments in your office, and reading through old journals that record when God moved in mighty ways.
5. Read the Bible.
Read through the passages or stories from the Scriptures that remind you of what Jesus or His servants have gone through for the sake of the Gospel and the eternal fruit their efforts and struggles produced.
As you tend to your soul, God will be faithful to be with you and help you “run with perseverance the race marked out” for you.