I was just reflecting about my days in the youth ministry. I count myself blessed to be in Hope Singapore; more specifically, Y-Hope. In my country, I am safe, my faith is open. In my church, the congregation is thriving, the infrastructure is grand, the various equipments, available. In my youth ministry, the structures are in place, the systems are strong, the leaders are biblical, the shepherds are caring, the caregroups are fun.
The list goes on.
Not that I’m already satisfied or resting on our laurels, but for illustration’s sake, let’s call this the “heaven” state.
Ideally, such environment are the breeding ground of angels – apostles, strong leaders, pastors, world changers, pillars of the church. I cannot see how can we stand before God to give an account if we contribute any less than that to the Kingdom given the amount of resources He had graciously blessed us with!
Yet more often than I would love to admit, I see people whom have been spoiled by the environment that we work so hard to continually perfect.
This is the shadow side of heaven.
Instead of producing angels from heaven, members that have tasted the strong spirit, structure and systems in the youth ministry; leaders who were entrusted to propagate our strengths onto the other areas of the church, merely wither off upon their transfer or migration.
Have we been guilty of training angels that can only survive in heaven?
In the end, every ministry that we have and will ever been in are all transitional ministries. We never actually own a ministry, we merely take care of it for the next generation.* If we, or our people are unable to move on from their present ministries victoriously; spoiled by present comfort and ill prepared for the future hardships; then we have already started descending down the long road of hell.
*Patek Philippe’s Signature Motto