Monday, August 4, 2014

Little Happies -- a Few Lessons I've Learned as a Youth Minister


Welcome back to the happiest little link-up on the planet!

Why, yes! Thanks for noticing. That is a new banner! I went a little crazy on picmonkey this weekend and designed a new banner to match my blog's new color scheme. How'd I do? 

Why, yes! You're absolutely welcome to use the spiffy new banner on your Little Happies posts. Thanks for asking.

Or, if you're more into horizontal things, you could use this version...


"Woah! She made two?!"

Yes. I made two. Let's just say I had a little too much free time on my hands the past few days.

Alright, now that that's out of the way, let's get to the good stuff.

This week's Little Happies are brought to you by my job as a youth minister. And the lessons these precious teens have taught me.

--one--


We had our Graduation Celebration last night to honor all our youth group teens heading off to college. There were only 4 graduates at our little party, but that's no matter. I sure will miss these young buddies. Each one is headed to a different school lots of hours away from Memphis, so the next time I'll see their cute faces will likely be December. Wahhh!

So, with that in mind...

Lesson #1: Savor each moment. 

Because, as cliche as it is to say it... time really does fly!


--two--


Lesson #2: It's cool to be yourself. 

Even if that means wearing a headband AND a party hat at the same time while making a weird face and demanding that the whole group take a (blurry) selfie with you. 

Even if that means being the random kid who brings a hammock to the party.

Even if that means screaming a loud, girly scream every time the other team throws the ball in ladder ball.

Even if that means eating only candy and cupcakes for dinner.

As teens, it's sometimes hard to accept what everyone around you is doing. But somehow, I've been blessed with this amazingly loving group of teens, and pretty much no one's weirdness bothers anyone. Beautiful stuff right there.


--three--


Lesson #3: Teens are the NOW of our Church.

Have you heard this line before?... "Teens are the future of our Church." While I kinda get where they're going with that (these kids will be our future priests and deacons and sisters and married couples and lay persons), I pretty much wanna squash it all together. Because it implies that they're not an important part of our Church now. Except, they absolutely are. And they're not all lazy. They don't all make dumb decisions. They don't all have a lot of growing up to do.

Let me tell you something. So many of the teens I work with are doing amazing things. Ah-maz-ing. A handful actually know far more about the Catholic faith than I do. I'm inspired to be a better Christian because of them. It's wonderful to witness. And it makes me proud to call them the NOW of our Church. You should be too!


--four--

(Don't) Let It Go
Last but not least, a less serious lesson...

Lesson #4: There is a limit to the number of times you can watch Frozen.

It's true. I don't know the exact number, but we've all watched it a few too many times in the past several months. Actually, all of my male teens refuse to watch it now. They get mad at the mention of any of the characters. And especially Hulk-like if we start to sing the songs. The gals, on the other hand, still mostly like it and especially like driving the boys bonkers by singing the songs. I usually sing along too. :)



11 comments:

  1. Love your new banner! and your weekend looked fun! Love your hat :):)

    Also, I haven't seen Frozen yet! Is it really good? I've heard mixed reviews?! and YES teens are the NOW of our church!

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    1. You haven't seen Frozen yet?!? How are we friends?? Ha! JK. You have to see it. It's pretty darn cute. Even if the story line has some weird holes, it's no matter. The music is catchy and the characters are memorable.

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  2. What a fun list! Teens are awesome, that's for sure.

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    1. They are! But for some reason, they get such a bad rap. Just trying to squash that stereotype, one day at a a time!

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  3. Love your (don't) let it go picture…so cute! What a great list! :) Love the new look of your blog, too! Have a great week!

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    1. Ha! The (Don't) Let It Go joke was actually my husband's. I totally stole it. I figure I should give him some credit now. :) Glad you like the new blog look! You have a great week too!

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  4. Glad you are having fun with the teens...I volunteered to work with the teens of our church before I met my dh...it was fun. The church we go to now really doesn't have much and mostly college kids run the events now. You are right...time does fly and we need to savor more often. I try to remind myself of that often.

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    1. Bummer that your church doesn't have much going on for the teens! Hrmm. It's nice to hear that you got involved with them at your other parish. They are so fun!! They keep me feeling youthful! :) I've got to remind myself to savor the moments more too. It's so easy to wish all this time away, especially while waiting for more exciting things to happen.

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  5. Your new blog design is super cute! I'm so glad you're working with teens. I know you say they are the "now" and I definitely agree, but it also give me hope for the future too. My teen years in our parish...well, let's just say no one was smiling like the kids in your pictures. You must be doing a great job with them. :)

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    1. Girl, you are too kind! And I certainly agree, they give me hope for our Church's future too! Perhaps I should have said they're the now and the future of our Church. I just get a little annoyed when people only consider them the future. They are a very alive part of the Body of Christ here and now and should be treated as such, even if their pre-frontal cortexes aren't fully formed yet. :)

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