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Leadership, Small Group Leaders, Volunteers

To the leader who is tired,

A Note from Mary Margaret West: This time of year, it’s hard to not be tired. Lean in and be encouraged today from Kelly’s post!

To the leader who is tired,

I know you are frustrated. You may even feel defeated– experiencing the constant rolling of eyes or having to sit through dreaded moments of awkward silences. The attitudes or disrespect week after week is simply exhausting. The unnecessary drama, the unappreciated conversations, the gossip, and let’s not forget the social media bullying because we all need an Instastory opportunity for a TBH.

You are not alone. You are not the only person who has felt this way. Do not listen to the lies which lead to guarded and distant hearts. It is very easy to only focus on the negative things that are happening, but this is the truth: God is still at work and He is specifically using you.

Right now, you may feel lost and discouraged– you may not understand or see the purpose in what you are doing. In the midst of these emotions, I pray that you would find time for rest and reflection. Continue seeking your Heavenly Father as you lead and proclaim truth into countless lives. What you are doing has purpose. Those you are serving have been divinely planned. Where you are in life is exactly where God wants you to be. Embrace these truths instead of letting fear have control of your thoughts and actions.

The role that you have in a student’s life is irreplaceable. The bond, the trust, and the challenges are elements to the gift of becoming a part of someone’s life. What may seem like a fun moment together while getting coffee or ice cream can result in eternal life change. This is only because of the power of God working through us.

Also, stop putting unnecessary pressure on yourself. You know your calling, and all the Lord asks of you is to be obedient. Your heavenly Father sees you, hears you, and wants you to ultimately rely on Him. Please do not give up or continue walking in defeat. Take the time you need to be poured into, spend time praying prayers that you have never prayed before, walk in your unknowns with boldness. Yes, there will be days that will be overwhelming. Yes, there will be times where you will not know the words to say. Yes, there will be moments that all you will do is call out for Jesus. We are promised that those days will come, but will you give up in defeat or will you put on your armor and go to war for the lives of your students?

The responsibility you have been given should not be taken lightly. For you know the ones who are hurting, the ones who need more encouragement, the ones who are boy crazy, the ones who struggle with eating disorders, the ones who have no support from home, the ones who are doing anything just to fit in, the ones who simply desire for attention in any way, the ones who come to every event but do not have a relationship with Jesus, the ones who struggle with lying, the ones who are going to be future leaders in society, the ones who think they are invisible to the world, the ones who feel the call to ministry, the ones who start all the drama, and the ones who think they have it all together but are secretly screaming for help.

Continue serving. Continue listening. Continue watching. Continue in your obedience to his Holy whispers. Continue in your willingness to serve the least-of-these.

Be confident in knowing that you have been chosen for such a time as this.

You are not alone,

From a fellow leader who is fighting for her students

Kelly McKinley serves as the Middle School Girls Minister at First Baptist Church in Hendersonville, Tennessee. She loves iced lattes and is constantly in the mood for a random road trip. Her heartbeat for the gospel has lead her to ministry opportunities from Haiti to Memphis and many places in between, focusing mostly on reaching young women in the Nashville area. Her past is one that has been scattered with grief, loss, anxiety, and depression but has been captivated by our need for Jesus in a world where these ailments run rampant. Only by the grace of God is she now able to encourage individuals to be confident in knowing that life is truly worth living. Her heart’s desire is to point others to Christ while they are grieving in grace.

Connect with Kelly: Instagram