Yesterday was our annual Youth Sunday at Fishers United Methodist Church. Lots of fun, a few people told me they enjoyed it, we heard from students about their mission trips and experiences in the Fire & Water program and we even handed out a few prizes (that one guy is going to love his Disney princesses Frisbees).
Unfortunately we had one person who was not amused. That's okay, it happens. But this time, instead of just accepting this happens once a year and being happy for our students, she decided to go ahead and tear a strip out of Aaron, our student MC for the morning. Nope, she didn't go after Liz or I, she reamed out a student. How dare he turn the sanctuary into a cinema.
It reminds me of a few years ago when our students went to do some yard work at a local nursing home. We showed up, and there was nothing to do. They had forgotten we were coming. So our group of hard working students ready to get dirty became a choir to sing songs to the elderly (we had a guitar, two students were going to sing originally, the choir suddenly became bigger). They weren't prepared, some didn't know the words, some didn't know the tune, but they sang for these people. And one woman was mad. Again, instead of going to an adult she went to the students and told them off, her mother deserved better than these people who didn't know the songs or have beaming smiles on their faces.
Luckily we had a great leader with us. Rich took the students aside as we were heading into the van to return to the church and explained to them this is part of ministry. Some people won't be happy. The group of students could choose to remember the lady that yelled at them, or they could forget her and focus on the fact they came to a nursing home and sang, even unprepared, to a group of people who don't see many young faces. And most of them enjoyed it, all but this one woman. Don't let her ruin your memory of tonight.
So that's what we need to do whenever we minister. We won't make everyone happy. That's just life. But yesterday, for some people, for the first time, church was fun. We let people know about the mission trips they helped support. We had two sisters talk about how they used to not really come to church and how being involved in this ministry has changed them and their family. We taught the church a new worship song. We worshipped in a different way, and we even gave away a Disney princess Frisbee. That's what I'm going to remember.