One of the great gifts of youth ministry is years-long relationships with young people during a time of great maturation. I saw several students yesterday whom I’d not seen since May, and the gains in height alone were a marvel.

We are witnesses to growth, both the kind that parents measure with a pencil on a wall and the less obvious kind. It occurs to me that an important task of youth ministry is to scout for growth, and then to point it out: to the church, to young people themselves, to their parents.

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