Interview with Josh Griffin

Here is my quick 4 question interview with Josh Griffin: High School Pastor at Saddleback, Author, Youth Ministry vet, Conference MC, and all around cool dude. Josh has had a big impact on my ministry and I don't think he even knows it. 99 Thoughts for Youth Workers, his great blog, and the SYM Podcast (now YM Garage) have all been, and continue to be, great sources of encouragement and content.  Plus he's pretty much the one that got me blogging in the first place, I can't thank him enough for that.


So without further ado, here is the interview:


1. When and where did you get your start in Youth Ministry?

The dean of men at the Bible college I was at said he was leaving to go pastor a church in Michigan! He asked me if I was interested in becoming his youth pastor so I spent the next few weeks praying over it with my new wife ... and felt called to do it. Problem was - I never heard from him again! But another church in Michigan called me and stayed there for almost 7 years. Made tons of mistakes but God did some amazing things - so happy for my experience at that awesome country church when I was just starting out.


2. What were some obstacles you faced in your first 3 years in ministry?

Immaturity, not keeping my senior pastor informed, blaming parents, poor communication, inconsistency, faking my walk with Christ, work-a-holic.


 3. How do those obstacles and successes from your first 3 years impact how and why you do ministry now?

They made me want to quit! In fact, that's pretty much exactly what I did. But God did a miracle and through some great books (Purpose Driven Church by Rick Warren and Doug Fields' Purpose Driven Youth Ministry). I began to see what God could do with his church and what he designed it to become. God stepped into our lives and healed some broken relationships and did some stunning things over the next few years. I'm so privileged today to serve with Doug and Rick and help other youth workers now as well - so humbling and exciting. Absolutely blown away by the poetry in what God is allowing us to do in this season.


 4.  What 1 piece of wisdom would you share with a rookie youth pastor?

Walk with Jesus. Don't fake it. Don't ride the verses you memorized as a kid or the podcasts you are gleaning from this week. Really truly walk with Jesus as a man or woman of God. You can fake it ... for a while. Take off the mask.