I'm a little frightened at this particular moment because I have just realized that I've not been "thinking" as much as I normally do. I can't blame it on a lack of creativity or say that there's nothing to ponder, because neither of those are true.
I am, however, finding myself actually thinking more about my future and how to "strategize" for what's to come, mostly with regards to my career. I"m actually thinking on why it is that many youth pastors seem to want to leave their churches after only 3 years of service. That's a good run, I suppose, but to me it seems like you'll never really get anywhere with jumping from place to place and spending a minimal amount of time at each place. Maybe it is possible to accomplish much and see many great things happen in that short span of time, of course it's God who does the real work anyway, but it seems that when it comes to the human relationships and the direction of a ministry plan, there's hardly a chance to get that kind of ball rolling in that amount of time. Of course I'm also beginning to wonder how long is "too long" for a youth pastor to be in the same church. It seems that ministry can always continue on well, but the impact that one can have decreases significantly after around 6 years, and maybe your passion and desire for that one church might diminish as well. I don't know, these are all just thoughts, but one thing I do know is that the church needs people who are committed to pushing through, even though it may get hard and it needs people who are intentional and at least somewhat strategic in what they do so that there's some sort of direction happening.
It seems that a lot of people bail when it gets super tough, I know there's definitely good reasons for some to leave their situation, and some even have trouble doing so as well. But then there seems to be others who just get "burned" by something and check out.
That would be like someone deciding to become homosexual because one relationship with the opposite sex didn't work out, that's how I see it anyway. Not all situations are the same, yes it is vastly important to take time to heal and recover, but why ditch completely? Maybe God's calling them elsewhere, maybe it'll happen to me and I"ll have to eat my words, who knows, I sure don't, but God does. Maybe we're just too chicken to face a little adversity when it really comes down to it. Maybe not.
I know some people who have left a ministry situation after a relatively short period of time and it's precisely what needed to happen. I'm in that situation right now, and it's exactly what needs to happen. So I'm not saying that everyone who leaves a church before their 4 year mark is a wuss or isn't committed, what I am saying is that there seems to be a trend that says after 3 years you're done, so you might as well get out while you can. That, I'm not fond of.