Retro Post: Why are kids pastors so lame?

I want to attempt to answer my own question, Why do most young people going into the ministry want to be youth pastors? But first a couple of your responses.

From He had lots of other great thoughts check out his whole post here.

Why most Children’s Pastors wanted to be youth pastors?
Because it’s when we’re teenagers or college students that we really start trying to live out our Christian walk; and the first ‘church’ relationship we ever had was with our Youth pastor. Therefore, making the youth pastor role the coolest one we’ve ever known! On a side note… it could also be that children’s ministry leaves a bad memory for many…

Sarah Thompson had the following to say on her blog.

Did I see that excitement and passion in Sunday School? Nope! Did I see it at Youth Group? Absolutely! Youth Group is where the action happened. It’s where I saw God turn up.

Reasons why do most young people want to be youth pastors and not children’s pastors

1. Teens are more social and youth groups have become more small group socially connected in and out of church.
2. Teens are thinking more about the future and what they want to be is by in large decided more in High School than elementary school.
3. More churches value youth ministry and more time and energy are put into that age demographic
4. College’s and Seminaries have many ministry tracts focused on Teen ministry and very few focusing on ministry to kids.
5. Most kids have a negative or neutral children’s church experience.
6. Youth pastors are just to cool. They are our youth pastor is no exception up on culture, fashion and are typically great communicators.
7. Teens think to be a youth pastor you have to be a retired female teacher or ex-christian school male principle.

What can we do solve this problem.

1. Start off by doing what we can do.
2. Focus on the power of the Holy Spirit and the power of relationships with others.
3. Have small group leaders that take ownership beyond sunday morning.
4. Make every sunday powerful, exciting, different, and FUN.
5. Push the value of kids in every forum God give you.
6. Recognize the gifts and callings God has given kids in your ministry and help the parents develop those gifts at home and in the context of church.
7. Take fashion and culture advise from your local youth pastor. Just kidding sort of.

I would like to add that for me one way I know I am doing my job is when kids that grew up in my ministry that thrive in the youth ministry. I rejoice because I know I had a small part in seeing that kid become whoever God has for them. I truly believe that youth and children’s ministry are inseparable.

Guerrilla Parenting: Tattling vs. Telling

Chris Spradlin over at wrote a great post about Tattling vs. Telling. I love his take in encouraging our kids not to tattle we need to also let them know when to tell. Read it here.

I have had a few parents ask abou the issue of tattling. I thought I would address it in my Guerrilla guide.

At the Luce house you are tattling if you are telling Mom and Dad about something that you haven’t tried to resolve first. In our quest to be fair and keep the peace with our kids we are not teaching our kids to be problem solvers. What we are teaching them to be are whiners.

What does this look like?

Boy #1 is repeating everything boy #2 is saying. Boy #2 is frustrated and he comes and tells mom and dad that Boy #1 won’t stop copying him. Dad says “Did you tell him to stop” Boy #2 “No” – That in our home is tattling.

Boy #1 is repeating everything boy #2 is saying. Boy #2 is frustrated and he comes and tells mom and dad that Boy #1 won’t stop copying him. Dad says “Did you tell him to stop” Boy #2 “Yes and he still won’t stop” – That in our home is telling. Totally permitted. Teaching kids to speak up does two things. It teachings the kid who is frustrated to learn how to create boundaries. It helps the kid who is being annoying that they need to respect others if they are going to achieve anything in life.

We need to give our kids the tools they will need in life and help them be problem solvers. Stepping in and solving conflict FOR your kids helps no one.

How we use XP3 for our 5th and 6th graders.

Have you ever asked your kids what kids they admire most. Most of the time they will tell you the name of a kid who is a few years older than they are. Once I started finding this to be a trend it caused me to rethink how I design things for uptown wether it’s a flier or print piece, is use this simple equation.

  1. When creating for Pre-school think elementry
  2. When creating for elementary think pre-teen
  3. When creating for pre-teen think jr. high

A few of my team leaders in our 5th,6th and 7th grade environments started telling me how our kids were not engaging with the 252basics lesson plans created for 5th and 6th graders. I observed a few times and had to agree. We started thinking through ways we could fix our problem everything from finding new curriculum to writing our own. We finely came to the conclusion that we should try and use XP3 which is the Orange groups Jr. High and High School Curriculum.

To kick off this new idea I preached to our 5th and 6th graders for a month straight. I was amazed how much better they connected to the content.

How do we tweak XP3 for 5th and 6th grade? We don’t have to tweak that much.

1. We stay clear of sex and dating series and references.
2. We shorten the message from 40min to 20min this is the most difficult part
3. We add an object lesson to connect the information to a physical object in their world.

That’s pretty much it. We don’t tweak it much but those small changes make a huge difference.

Don't believe your own bio.

Bio’s are a like a big nose everyone has one, well lots of people have them. From the rise of blogging to the invention of “The social Network” everyone has a 140 character description of who they are and what they’ve done. Having a bio isn’t a problem. The problem comes when we start believing our own bio’s.

In the past few weeks I have had the honor of speaking at two amazing conferences and was recognized by Children’s Ministry Magazine as one of the 20 up and coming kids pastors to watch. All of which I am humbled, amazed and overwhelmed by as I write this.

As I was having some alone time with God he dropped this challange in my spirit: “Don’t Believe Your Own Bio.” If we are going to shoot straight and be totally honest we have all met people who not only believe their own bio but add in extra stuff to sound even more important. I NEVER want to be that guy.  Here are a few things I constantly remind myself so that I always view everything I do in the proper perspective.

1. I have what I have and am what I am ultimately because of the power of Christ in me.
2. Behind every successful person is a family that supported and believed,  in that person.
3. Success never happens in a vacuum any one person success is most often because of a team that helped directly or indirectly.
4. I believe the local Church is the hope of the world. Everything I do is to help the local church grow, expand and reach people far from Christ.
5. As talented as I or others may think I am there are many more people out there that know more than me, that are far more talented than me. Those people need to speak up because we all can benefit from your wisdom
6. I still have heaps to learn and I believe that I can learn from everyone and anyone.

One of the things that has amazed me over the past 3 years is the amount of people blogging, collaborating and working together. The more we work together the more Christ gets the credit and the Gospel gets spread. If you don’t blog, collaborate or work with any other kids people do it now the kingdom of God needs your voice.