So, last Wednesday night was my last night as the youth director at our church. I had been at it for five years, and at my age, five years represents quite a change in the physical aspects of keeping up with a bunch of teens. I’ve been to camp with them four times; jumped up and down with them at several hundred concerts (and spent one year with a bulging disc as a result!); shown approximately 5000 movies; bought $100,000 worth of snack foods; driven hundreds of miles to different events; etc…… I’ve prayed with them as they made decisions for the Lord, I’ve loved and counselled them in the Word, I’ve prepared a gazillion Bible studies to encourage them to learn as much as they can about Jesus. I still love them and my desire to see them grow in the Lord is the same as it ever was. It was just time, and we all knew it.
In the past five years, we have had 12 teens graduate out of the youth group into the college and career age level. The numbers have fluctuated from three to 21 to eight. In all the trips we took, I never once had to bring a kid home from a group function. They knew that I loved them, but they also knew that I wouldn’t hesitate to remove them from an event in order to ensure the pleasure of the rest of the group.
It was a good five years. I’m thankful to have had them.