Last month, we had our good friend Karen over just a couple of weeks before she moved to Kelowna to begin employment with Disney Interactive. When Karen told me that she would be working on the popular game Club Penguin, I told her that Jacob plays that game all the time. Within a matter of minutes, we had set up a date for Karen to come over to our place to eat and then play.
Needless to say, Jacob was very excited for the opportunity to teach someone – and an adult at that – everything he knew about Club Penguin. He counted down the days to Karen’s visit and he could barely contain his excitement when the day finally arrived. After a delicious dinner (prepared by Gail of course), Jacob showed Karen the ins and outs of the game for the better part of two hours. It was a great visual: Jake the eager 9 year-old as teacher and Karen the willing grown-up as obedient student.
This morning I sat in the dentist’s chair as he scraped, drilled, and picked among other things. I knew what the end result was to be…however I had no clue how he was going to get there. I tried my best to just relax and trust him (and pray that I didn’t hear any of these things come from his mouth). In essence, I placed the fate of my teeth in his hands.
Such is what parents do with us in our youth ministries: they put the spiritual well-being of their children in our hands. Not completely and exclusively of course, as we youth ministers are supposed to complement and supplement the faith formation that is hopefully taking place at home (and in some cases at school).
But while their kids are at our youth gathering, prayer group, or service outing…the buck stops with us. For better or for worse.