This morning a giant snowflake flew up my nose and I tried to cherish the moment despite the fact that yesterday I was able to run outside in shorts.
Ever since there's been a tug on my heart to move back to Texas, I've been thinking a lot of about cherishing snow. Snow reminds me of the time my car got stuck so I yelled about how I didn't choose to live here (which I thought I blogged about, but apparently I didn't. Basically, one time my car got stuck in the snow, and I acted like a five-year-old until my very gracious guy friend helped me out, not a shining moment for me, but a shining moment for guy friends and God's mercy.). Snow reminds me of how I used to say, "there's a snowflake's chance in (place where snow wouldn't last very long) that I ever work in youth ministry."
Turns out, I should stop underestimating snow.
If during my first year as an RUF intern I felt like a college freshmen, this year has been senior year. Just trying to figure out what I want to do with my life, make the most of my time with my friends, and wearing yoga pants a little more often. It's been particularly interesting to figure out what I want to do with my life. Since August, I've turned down or not been offered some fifteen job opportunities that all for a time seemed ideal until they didn't. It's been confusing, and exhausting; and I've thrown the proverbial dart at the map on more than a few occasions.
Back in February I prayed, "Lord if you could just let a job fall into my lap, that would be great. I know that's not really how this works..." The next day the associate pastor at Redeemer Waco, the church I attended in college, e-mailed me asking if I would be interested in coming on staff doing full time youth ministry.
I've tried to narrow down why I decided to take this job into a compact anecdote, but there's too much. God has been so gracious to flood me with affirmation and encouragement, and I am so excited.
So here are some sound bites:
- I'll be the first full time assistant youth ministry director. I was the first intern at City Church Eugene, and the first RUF intern at Pitt. I love paving the way.
- I love Redeemer. I used to say I would take a job there if what they offered me was just sweeping the floors. I was loved so well as a college student there, and I am so excited to jump back in.
- My friend Sarah who works with middle schoolers in Knoxville said of her youth group experience, "I don't remember what they said, but I remember that they were there." Which is pretty true of me too. I love being there, I am not half bad at kickball, and I am so excited to talk about One Direction with a whole new age group.
- I'm so excited to walk alongside parents as they pour into their students in the "wet cement years"
- I love being in the ministry of seed planting. There is so much that I wish my RUF girls had heard before they got on campus, and now I get to be that person for the girls of Redeemer.
I used to think of youth ministry as "God's Junior Varsity Team." I loved my own youth group leaders, so I have no clue where this thought came from. But people who worked with the youths just seemed to have too much energy and patience and bad haircuts to work with other age groups. But since when did I get too good for God's JV team?
As far as my responsibilities go, I'll mostly be hanging out with middle and high school girls. I'll be a part of Sunday school classes, Wednesday night programming, leading small groups, driving mini-vans, going to track meets, brainstorming outreach events, telling girls to be nicer to their moms, and walking the line of encouraging modesty without making modesty THE thing.
This job comes as a partnership through RYM, which will provide me with training and support. Redeemer is providing over half of my financial support, the other $15,000 I'll be raising through my already existing support network, and readers like you. You give can now here and I'll be continuing to send out regular ministry updates which you can sign up for here.
God has done more than I could have ever imagined in me and through RUF in Pittsburgh, and I am eager for what's next.