Two Cents Tuesday: Is Everyone Apathetic?

I'm starting a new series on the blog. It's called "Two Cents Tuesdays" and its where you get to help other church leaders who are struggling where they are. So I'll start taking one question (one scenario) each week from my mail bag (...er email inbox) and share it with you (protecting the innocent of course by keeping it anonymous). I want your TWO CENTS.
I haven't been too far removed from seminary and have landed my first youth ministry role at a church in the midwest. I'm already having some doubts about my abilities as a youth worker. It seems like I get no support from anyone at my church. People have zero energy... or passion and no one wants to volunteer for anything! It seems like everyone is apathetic. Is it just me or are other people experiencing this in ministry?
So what say you? Can you relate at all to what this youth worker is experiencing? What "two cents" would you offer this youth worker?

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4 Responses to “Two Cents Tuesday: Is Everyone Apathetic?”

  1. # Blogger Rob

    I have seen this a lot in churches. My advice would be to raise up a new generation or go out and find the people who will help. It's hard work but if leadrship was easy everybody would be doing it. I have seen through investment apathetic people become passionate for God.  

  2. # Blogger iamtjreid

    I totally relate to this youth worker. I have been in places where I have felt this way. I had a couple of thoughts on ways to help.

    1. Build relationship. It sounds like you (the youth worker) are new to the place. It takes a bit of time to gain peoples' trust and hearts. Loving them by spending time outside of normal church activity is usually a great way to build friendships. People usually want to do ministry with people they enjoy hanging out with.

    2. Give easy entry points. Allow people the opportunity to come to an event without any commitment. Let them see if they like it. I've found that some people are scared that we're going to rope them into a commitment they can't get out of. Have them check out the youth service a few times, then sit with them and talk about it. Or have some people that you just use when big events come around - because they are really good at it.

    3. Sometimes you find yourself at a church where apathy has been the norm. Talk to your pastor - see his take on it and how it can change. But don't just accept that that is how it is going to be. Pray, strategize, and continue to do all that you can do to love people and see the unsaved turn to Christ!

    I've been where you are, and I think it can happen in any ministry sometimes. Stay close to Jesus and grow your leadership in this time!

    Your Friend,
    TJ Reid  

  3. # Anonymous Joshua

    Relax and look deeper. Probably there is enough heartbreak and burnout in the congregation to hold them back from feeling too excited about your plans. Plus, if you aren't from the Midwest, or have been away for several years, you may no longer be used to the culture. East coasters & West coasters tend to be more energetic in their initial pursuits, but mid-westerners tend to be more cautious by nature.  

  4. # OpenID j4man

    I would say that it is a lack of enthusiasm and passion in others. This unfortunately not unusual so do not get discouraged but show others how much a difference can be made with passion and enthusiasm. I would also say that TJ makes some great points too that would be very helpful.  

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