This is a great Q&A from The Bridge, an excellent ministry in Chicago.
About confronting your youth pastor, and extends to confronting any of your church leaders.
(Re-posted with permission from The Bridge.)
I am very involved with my church, and I love the people there. But the thing is, I think there are some things that the leadership, especially the youth pastor, could be doing better. He’s not like doing anything wrong, he’s just not getting the kids fired up the way he could. How do I bring the subject up in a way that he will listen to me?
Don’t. This thing you are thinking about doing, do not do it. I get how you are feeling, it is a feeling that permeates youth. I know you are on fire for the Lord and you want everyone else to be where you are. That is not a bad thing, it’s a great thing. The idea of telling someone in a position of responsibility that they are dropping the ball, based on your zero years of experience, is not a good use of that energy.
Here is the thing, God put him in that position. That is true of every position, the Bible talks about the authorities placed over you. That does not mean he is good at his job, but even if he is not, it is true. And since you say that he’s not doing anything immoral or wrong, there is not anything to confront him on (which would not be your job anyway). Hebrews 13:17 says: “Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you.” So if he is dropping the ball with the ministry he has been entrusted with, that is going to be between him and God. And you are called to make his life easier. Luckily, there is a way to do that and help ease your ministry energy.
That’s right, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and start doing something. You want kids to be fired up, time to start doing the firing! (that turn of phrase kind of fell apart halfway through, let’s all just move on okay). Tell him you would love to help, and start doing some stuff outside what is set up already, with his permission. Start taking kids to lunch, playing frisbee golf, or if you are a girl…pinteresting? is that a thing? Invest in one on one relationships, that’s what gets kids (or anyone) fired up. Not a super sweet worship band or the neato glasses frames the youth guy wears. Nothing wrong with those things, but if those are all you get you don’t have much. You might find out that this guy’s job is tougher than you think. You will at least have gained some experience to shape your ministry opinions and give them some weight. It will be harder, and better than you think. Got get ‘em.