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Three Surprises As An Intern

When I was given the opportunity to serve as a youth intern with Evergreen, I felt adequately prepared to step into the position and believed I had a solid grasp on what to expect. While this was true, I have also experienced a few surprises along the road. These new experiences that have popped up in the past few months have helped me to learn and grow and even more so build solid relationships with those at Evergreen.

The first surprise I have faced as an intern is not being able to shepherd the entire youth group. When I first started, I thought I would be able to shepherd each student on a deep level. However, when you have a youth group of 50+ students, that task becomes quite challenging. One of the biggest surprises I have encountered thus far is coming to the realization that I simply cannot shepherd every single student. So I took the example of Jesus. He preached to the masses and loved those He encountered, but He took 12 under His wing and they were the ones He poured into on a more personal level. I have started a student leadership team. This team I have been able to spend a significant amount of time with, shepherding them, guiding them and helping them grow in their roles as student leaders. They are part of my “12.” One thing that I have learned through this experience, is to trust my youth leaders. We have a wonderful group of youth leaders who shepherd the students as well, and they each have their “12” that they spend that significant time with. Between all of us, we come together as a community to care for and lead all of the students.

Second is finding time to read my Bible for my personal devotion. I thought coming into this role my Bible reading time would skyrocket. Well, to be frank, it hasn’t. It is now my job to read the Bible, but that is different than reading it for personal growth. When you read the Bible as it is part of the job description, it feels like you are checking off the box for the day. There are days when I have meeting after meeting, and I never even pick up my Bible. It took me awhile to get into a rhythm, but now I have found that precious time to spend with our Savior reading His Word for my personal devotions.

Lastly, one thing I did not think about in depth prior to starting this role is what my involvement with the entire church body would look like. It can be nerve racking talking to people I don’t know. During weekend services, it is much easier to gravitate toward the youth, rather than introducing myself to someone I have not met. I understand the gravity of praying and fellowshipping with the entire church body and not just the youth group. One thing I have learned throughout this process is how amazing our church body is. They are always willing to talk with me and they are open with their struggles, which gives me opportunities to pray with them.

Overall, I might have seen a few surprises along the way, but I have been incredibly blessed. While I walked in as an intern feeling somewhat prepared and well assisted by the amazing pastors at Evergreen, it has already served as a great learning opportunity. I have been incredibly blessed and thankful to spend time with the youth, the pastoral staff, and the entire congregation. I have seen myself grow in God and as a leader in significant ways. I have great mentors in Ryan A., Ryan D., and Toby. I also have a fantastic wife who has supported me in this transition. I am excited to see what the future holds at Evergreen Bible Church.

Matt Arnett
Youth Ministry Intern

Read the Apologetics Spotlights every week. Some are presented by students from the Student Leadership Team.

Categories: Evergreen Connection