Encouragement for Youth Leaders from J.D. Greear

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You have taken on quite an awesome task to guide your students on their spiritual journey. Students struggle with doubts about their faith. They find it difficult to center their lives on the gospel and trust in God to guide their lives. It's a struggle for everyone; we know how they feel!

Take a look at this real-life story. Jasmine grew up in church but turned from her faith to keep a friend.



Do you know students like Jasmine who are fighting against peer pressure? Are there students who have dropped out of your group? Take a moment to pray for them and consider reaching out to them this week.

 
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J.D. Greear, author and Lead Pastor of the Summit Church in Raleigh-Durham gives a good perspective on how we, ourselves, can deal with guilt and the gospel. This guidance will help you as you are dealing with students at a critical time in their faith journey.



I love J.D.'s analogy of a floating balloon. Who wants to get smacked all the time? We get weary and our students get weary. The transformation we want in ourselves and in our students comes from God … not more information or guilt or forcing them to behave.
He encouraged us to make sure that every lesson we teach is not a list of things they need to do for God, but "making them stand in awe of what God has done for them." 

J.D. wrote the book Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary. You may find that helpful in your own transformation. He also spoke on this very topic in the youth series, Reckless Abandon, which you can stream from RightNow Media.

Take a moment to look in your own life right now. Are you feeling "smacked"? By whom? Are you feeling in awe of what God has done? What does that mean? Write down your thoughts and feelings about your own ups and downs. (Your students could benefit from hearing your own journey.)
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Please let me know any ways I can encourage, support and pray for you.
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Thank you for your faithfulness. May God bless your time, effort as you pour your life into your students and point them towards Jesus.