One of the biggest struggles in my life is learning not to live in the opinions of others. Of those opinions that others have of me I think that the biggest one would be do people respect what I do. I don’t know if it is a father issue, or maybe just a self-esteem thing, but I feel like I am constantly worried about whether or not people think I am doing a good job.

So I am in the exactly wrong job. My official title at church is Associate Pastor. Under that there are several areas that I am in charge of, some of which I do well, some of which get handled after everything else gets handled. (Hey that is how it goes when you have too much to do and too little time to do it). I have been at my church for nearly 10 years now, so it isn’t like I am the new kid on the block. But for some reason, for some of the people I am nothing more than just the guy who plays with their kids.

So I get in this “I deserve” mindset that is so far from where I should be, but I can’t seem to find my way out of it. I look at what I do at my church and not only that and the supposed role that I have and I start to think of what I deserve. I think I deserve to be treated as if I am a pastor of my church. I deserve at the very least to be kept in the loop. That “I deserve” mindset gets inside of me and won’t let go some time.

Of course in reality I deserve nothing. I have been granted a set of skills and a time and a place to serve God and those are gifts beyond my wildest dreams. My God has chosen not to give me what I deserve and instead to give me grace, amazing grace, and more blessings than I care to name.

I know those things, but sometimes it just helps to write them down so I can remember, and if to some people I am just the guy who plays with the kids I can live with that because there are some pretty amazing youth at my church and I am honored to be a part of their lives.

4 thoughts on “Respect

  • November 17, 2008 at 6:11 PM

    Bro…Somehow, once again, you’ve typed one of those posts that manages to hit the nail right on the head, at least for me. It’s gotta be hard to be humbled like that, but at the same time…your response is incredibly dead-on.

    Keep rockin!

    Luke G.

    (Plus, I’m the guy that spends time with their kids too…like you said, that in and of itself isn’t such a bad gig anyways!)

  • November 17, 2008 at 6:41 PM


    I’ve enjoyed reading for sometime now (I know, I should hit the contribute button). I am on staff at church as a musician, and I also have a M-F job. And all staff have had (or will have) this attitude at some point. It goes with having a "job"; it’s just harder to manage when you work for the kingdom – i.e., it is harder to put self aside on Sunday when you are a staff member since I am not necessarily expected to on Monday- Friday (does that make sense).

    Being on staff can be a difficult job lots of days. Sometimes I feel like I answer to 150 bosses rather the person who supervises my position. The average church member can’t appreciate the fact that you dont just "play", but you are preparing each week, studying each week, setting an example, etc. There is so much more to what a staff person does than what is "seen" on Sunday or Wednesday.

    By the way, you deserve to be included in the loop – don’t ever feel guilty for thinking that. It just takes some time for others to see that.

    Anyway, just trying to be a Barnabus……

    Church Pianist

  • November 17, 2008 at 11:09 PM

    hey brother,
    if you can humble yourself to be on the level with "kids" for the glory of god, then it’s all good.
    i work with our youth group, and lot of the "elder" brothers and sisters may think it comes naturally for me to work with youth and crack jokes, "play with them", etc., but it’s only through god that i can deny my own self pride and "play" with kids with joy.

  • November 18, 2008 at 2:01 AM

    I don’t think this is the case in my own church, but you brought up an interesting point.

    When people see a youth pastor relating to kids they may think he is immature. If they have never seen the other side of him or had an opportunity to know him in his everyday life they may feel that he always acts that way. But I think for many ministers there are 2 sides of their life. There is the public interact with teenagers side of life and there is the more private serious side of life. I think Jimmy’s point is valid, to be able to be someone who can relate to teenagers is a talent and a gift from God, most people who look down on youth ministers would never be able to do it. In the same way that I just can’t seem to talk to children without them being scared some people can talk to teens better than others. I think often our church confuses that with immaturity when it is actually a pretty amazing gift (I wish I could do it a little better, but I think most youth ministers feel that way).

    I wonder if this is just with youth workers. I mean do people look at 3 year old Sunday school teachers and think that they always talk in simple sentences and tell people to say please? Maybe they do.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.