1. Christ called us to the hard road.- Whenever you see Christ calling people He is telling hem to take up their cross and follow Him. This did not give His listeners a picture of cute jewelry or a fun t-shirt. They pictured death, and the worst death imaginable at that. They knew that following Jesus was a hard road and that it would probably cost them their lives. They not only knew it because of these statements but because Jesus specifically called them to the hard road at one point. We all are familiar with the passage of the narrow and the broad road and how only leads to Heaven. Well guess what? Those truths that Jesus taught 2,000 years ago still ring true today and still are something that must be applied to our ministries and our lives. Often times in ministry we will have to make the tough decisions and do the less popular things, but if that is what it takes to be obedient to God's calling them we must do them.
2. Christ promised us we would have struggles.- Jesus said that in the world we would have troubles. But remember He also said that we should not worry because He had overcome the world. Jesus knew we would face opposition and trials and He was always very upfront about this. So when we do we should not be caught off guard. There will be bumps in the road. We will not be able to keep everyone happy. But do not worry. Jesus has overcome the world. Plus, I find that often times when someone is mad it me it probably me there is a chance that I am following Jesus pretty closely and they just do not understand.
3. We need to speak these truths to our students. - These truths are not just for us. They are for our students as well. Not just that they are for our leaders, and our students parents, and our entire church. We need to make sure we speak these truths to them and make sure that they take the hard road as well. Which makes this a hard road for us as well. Why? Because our students, and others in our lives, will not necessarily want to hear what we have to say. But we are not called to be popular or to be their best friend. We are called to be disciples and have been placed in their lives for a reason, to help them experience live change and go out and change the lives of others. Yes we are to love them. but sometimes love means saying the hard things.
So please know, yes youth ministry is a hard road at times, but you are not alone. You have Jesus and you have your brothers and sisters who are also on this road. And we want to be counted as those who are with you so please continue to let us know how we can support and pray for you on this journey.