As I travel around the country and meet new people, I am always amused by the look on others’ faces when they find out that I live in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Some people believe that Tulsa is short for “TULSARUSALEM.” This is somewhat understandable, considering the history of faith that Tulsa has. I grew up thinking, To live in Tulsa would be a dream come true, but to work at a church in Tulsa would be the impossible dream.
In 2005, I had the opportunity to live the dream: I become a youth pastor at a church in Tulsa. It was amazing, and God did some supernatural things. However, you would think that because I was in Tulsa surrounded by world-renown Bible schools, universities, churches and conferences, that I was also surrounded with all the resources I needed to have an extremely large youth ministry. Right? Wrong.
During my time as a Tulsan youth pastor, I attended a youth pastor’s conference at one of those world-renown churches. Instead of walking away from that conference feeling invincible and ready to take on the world, I walked away feeling somewhat depressed. The ideas for growing an effective youth ministry seemed to be from another planet, not that the planet they were from was a bad planet. I wanted to live on that planet. However, I didn’t have a drama team, unless you counted the usual teen drama found in the break ups of junior high boys and girls. I didn’t have a praise and worship leader who could compete on American Idol. When my praise and worship leader left, I was stuck with an expensive drum set and no drummer. In a city with all the bells and whistles of ministry, I felt alone.
I know what it feels like when you don’t know what to do. And I know what it feels like when everything you do is ineffective. However, I also know the joy and excitement that come from getting in your prayer closet, receiving a dream from God, and then, little by little, building a group of students to fulfill that dream.
FCF YOUTH NETWORK (FCFYN) is an extension of Faith Christian Fellowship International that wants to help youth ministries and leaders of like faith. The goal of FCFYN is to reach and raise the future generations of FCF by helping churches disciple students and train leaders. We want to help you—the pastor, youth pastor, or volunteer—with relationships that will encourage and equip you to become effective in training your students to become future leaders.
The focus of our conferences and camps is to build relationships and make disciples by teaching Biblical truth and Spirit-led living. Our leadership training for youth pastors and leaders provides practical tools for effective ministry, regardless of church or youth group size.
You’re not alone. Connect with FCFYN, and together, we’ll reach and raise the future generations.