Encouraging Your Youth Pastor
Young person, have you ever had someone offer you a word of encouragement that helped you through the day or perhaps even longer than that? Do you remember how you delighted you felt, knowing that someone else believed in you, appreciated what you did, or thought you were something far from the ordinary? I can think of several times in my life when a kind word helped me, in more ways than the giver could have ever intended; and I’m sure that you can think of some moments of your own.
Though we do not look to people as the single source of our encouragement—The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth… (Psalm 28:7)—I must say that, as the youth pastor of North Valley, the teenagers here have encouraged me far beyond what I can express. My spirits are buoyed when they tell me that they pray for me or when I can see that they are truly seeking the Lord’s will.
If you can be used to keep your youth pastor encouraged, then he, in turn, can be used to keep you encouraged.
If you are a teenager attending another church, please remember that God has blessed you with a youth pastor; make it a responsibility to help keep that man encouraged. If you can be used to keep your youth pastor encouraged, then he, in turn, can be used to keep you encouraged.
Here are several ways to encourage your youth pastor:
- Pray for him. I cannot tell you how thrilled I feel when a young person says, “Bro. Tim, I’m praying for you.” Without a doubt, your youth pastor covets your prayers. Ask God to give him wisdom and power as he leads your youth group. Ask for protection for his family—from physical harm and from the spiritual attacks of Satan.
- (For Young Ladies) Befriend and encourage his wife. Take the initiative of approaching her and getting to know her better. Sometimes, young people become accustomed to waiting for the youth pastor or his wife to notice something about them or to remark about something in their lives. And then they are erroneously disappointed when neither happens as soon as they would like. Consider being the first one with the word of encouragement. Be the first one to express gratitude, to wish a happy birthday, to complement, to start a conversation, etc.
- Write a note. Think of the last time you wrote to your youth pastor and his wife and thanked them for a youth activity. Think of the last time you wrote to your youth pastor and thanked him for a sermon. A simple note only takes a few minutes to write, but the activity of writing that note shows effort, thoughtfulness, and gratitude.
- Be present at all events. Whether it is soul winning, youth group meetings, activities, or any other events, encourage your youth pastor by being present at everything. Do not pick and choose activities; be at everything!
- Give them their favorites. Every so often, surprise your youth pastor and his wife with a favorite of theirs—candy bars, sodas, Starbucks, etc.
- Always say thank you. Never get off a bus or leave a meeting without saying thank you to your youth pastor and his wife.
- Offer a word of praise. Have you ever told your youth pastor or his wife something that you appreciate about either of them? Find something that you respect and admire and express that in words.
- Cheer for him. Next time he comes into a room or gets on the bus, go absolutely crazy for him. His number one fans should be the teenagers that he works with every week.
- Do right. Perhaps one of the greatest things that you can do is to just do right. In III John 4, we read: “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.” That truly is the greatest reward for any youth pastor.
Please allow the Lord to use you this month to be a channel of blessing to your youth pastor and his wife so that they, in turn, can be used to keep others encouraged.