Is Youth Ministry Selfish?

I don’t know about you, but there are many times I see a youth ministry and think wow those kids are full of themselves.  Have you ever just wanted to scream at young people, “Life isn’t about you”?  I have.  Have you ever scratched your head and just thought, “How could they be so oblivious to what goes on around them”?  I have.  So does this make youth ministry inherently evil?  Are all youth so selfish and we feed that by having youth ministry?

I work with dozens of youth ministries around the country.  I see the good, the bad, and the ugly.  But I also see the transformed!  That is what often times keeps me going forward.  I want to tell you about one conversation I had with a youth pastor this last week.  He is doing a mission trip through YMI to Arizona.  The preparation for this trip has changed his youth ministry.  He told me, “I can’t explain it, but we are closer and more like a family than ever before from Jr. High through my Sr. in High School.  Everyone is super excited about this trip.”  So, what is it about missions that can excite a group like this and how is it the key to overcoming our selfish mentality?

Simply put, missions equals service.  The root of selfishness is inward focus and not thinking about the larger picture.  The root of service is looking at others and sacrificing of yourself.  This is why missions is the answer to self-centered ministry.  It forces youth to think about how there are people that don’t know the gospel and are going to hell.  It helps them realize that God wants to use them and that God is in control and the sovereign Being of the universe.  If you sit there and ask why is my youth ministry so selfish or our youth of our church so judgmental, then ask if missions is part of your youth ministry.  If not, then contact me here at YMI and we would love to serve you in that way.


About ymijoseph

I am a slave of Jesus Christ and strive to live for Him everyday. I have been blessed with the coolest job at Youth Missions International and the most amazing Family. For a living I get to train young people on how to share their faith and I also get to send them to other countries. I have seven siblings and three awesome in laws. My Father is a pastor and my mother is the best cook of all time.

Posted on March 5, 2013, in Church, International, Missions, Para-church, Training, YMI, Youth Ministry, Youth Missions International and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Well written. May we inspire our youth to live for Christ in the spirit of the Apostle Paul — “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain”. We must inspire them first by our own personal life example, then secondly by investing in their lives to help them learn to live like this. Thank you for what your are doing in both of these ways! Love you and are proud of you! Dad

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