The original annoying youth group parent [Time Out]

Topic / Time Out

Time Out quiet times for the youth worker's soulTime Out: Weekly quiet times for the youth worker’s soul.
I’m often amazed at the request we hear, as youth workers, from parents. There’s always requests to meet with kids, and that’s great. What’s funny is the reasons. I’ve literally had parents ask me to talk to their kids about not getting baptized (even though they were ready), tell their kids something was wrong that wasn’t (just because they didn’t like it), reprimand me for talking publicly to students about fighting things like sex trafficking, and have tough conversation with kids that they basically didn’t want to have. Sometimes requests are fine, sometimes they just make me shake my head (and please feel free to share your stories…).

Then comes the problem that I do the same thing myself. I ask God for things that I shouldn’t. Things I want that I know aren’t good. Deliverance from things that I need to be a part of (in a passing the buck kind of way, not a Jesus in the garden kind of way). I have my focus wrong, I just notice it when other people share it, not me.

In Matthew 20:20-28 we have the first youth group parent. A mother wants her sons to have the highest position. Makes you wonder what everyone else was thinking.

“Why do they get the highest position?”

“Dude, their mommy has to speak for them!”

“Man, why does mom have to get involved again?”

Jesus shoots it down. The focus is all wrong. In fact, it’s opposite.

Jesus says that we need to shoot for the bottom. We live to serve, not be served. We live to sacrifice, not gain. We look to be last, not first. Humility is key. We aren’t to look for power. We are to serve with Jesus, alongside him. Follow the model that he set.

The point really isn’t the youth group parents, then or now. Let’s turn the tables. Where’s my humility? Entitlement? Am I looking to serve Jesus, or rule with him?


  • What’s your ministry attitude like right now?
  • How are you dealing with authority in your position right now, ministry or otherwise?
  • Are you looking to serve Jesus or rule with him?

Posted on May 16, 2011

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