2/12/2011 11:58:00 am

Things to Rely On

Posted by Tom French |

I had another night of youth group last night. I'm in my 11th year of youth ministry this year. I'm pretty sure that makes me some kinda veteran. If youth ministry had a life cycle, I would have died twice and now be reincarnated as a dolphin.

But what I've noticed in my many years of youth ministry is that there are a few things you can always expect to happen in youth ministry.

- If you have chips they will always end up on the floor. And if you have chips in a small group there is always one kid whose chip eating skills are slightly deficient, and they will end up with an inverted halo of chips on the floor around them, like they are some deity who has been visited by worshippers that lay offerings of crisps at their feet.

- If there's a ball, there will be soccer. It doesn't matter how small the room, or how un-soccer like the ball, if there's a ball there will be soccer. "Oh we're in a cupboard and I just found an elliptical cushion. Soccer!"

- You can say a thousand things of great spiritual importance but the one time you make a joke that you would never want the parents to hear, that's the one thing they remember and repeat for weeks.

- At any given moment in a youth night there is an 85% chance that there is at least one group of girls standing off to the side, giggling. In all my years of youth ministry, I have never once heard one of these conversations so I have no idea what they giggle about.

- In every youth leadership team for every one leader that is super organised there are five leaders who prepare during the first 10 minutes of youth group.

- People love to donate stuff to the youth group. Sometimes this is awesome and you score cool stuff usually it's not. "Oh I was just cleaning up and I found 200 old issues of "Popular Mechanics". I thought the youth group might want it so I've just left them in the youth cupboard for you."

- On that note, every church has at least on youth cupboard, but no one is quite sure whats in it or how it got there. Like the 40 pairs of stockings, the 4 half used rolls of toilet paper, or the box of lollies that went out of date in 1995.

- There is often a boy who all the girls like, and there is often a girl who all the boys like. And there is almost always a boy who all the leaders like and think the girls should like, but they don't and a girl who all the leaders like and think the boys should like, but they don't. This is eternally dissatisfying. (When I say the leaders like them I don't mean like-like, just to clear that up.)

- Youth leaders think their youth group should start dating each other until they do, then they think they should stop.

- There's always one kid who has been coming for a year, but no one can remember their name.

That's all I got for now. If you have more, feel free to add them. Right now, I should go get on with my day.

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