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KurtJohnston

Kurt Johnston has been a youth pastor since 1988 and currently leads the student ministries team at Saddleback Church in Southern California. Widely regarded as one of the most trusted voices in youth ministry, Kurt loves to encourage other youth workers and has written and created over 50 books and resources with that goal in mind. In his free time, Kurt enjoys surfing and riding dirt bikes in the desert with his wife and two children.

The insecurity hit me as soon as I saw the topic for this week! I’m 47-years-old. I’m still trying to figure out how to use Dropbox, and the idea that my data can be stored in some mysterious “cloud” still kinda creeps me out! So when it comes to apps, let’s just say I don’t have many, but here are the ones I use most:

Starbucks: Since I go to Starbucks almost every morning to get my work started, it made sense to download the app that works like a reloadable card on my phone.

Candy Crush: Don’t judge me.

Quiz Up: Because who doesn’t want to be reminded daily of how much smarter your friends are than you.

Surfline: An app that gives me the surf report and forecasts at my favorite spots.

Clock: I use this app to help me tell time and to set an alarm to wake me up.

I have a grand total of about 10 apps on my cell phone, that’s it. But that wasn’t always the case. A couple of years ago I went “App Crazy” and downloaded just about every app recommended by anybody out there. Time management apps, photo-filter apps, game apps, apps that told me where I was or where I was heading, and apps that told me where to eat.

As a result of my app addiction my phone was cluttered and full of stuff I never used, and I had a harder time finding the apps I did want to use! So I cleaned it up; I got rid of the stuff that was getting in the way. Simply put, I developed a mindset of “If it isn’t useful to me, then I don’t need it…period.”

 Maybe this principle applies to our lives and youth ministry as well. Is your youth ministry and life too cluttered? Have you packed them so full of stuff that sounds good to you, that other people say you have to try that it’s getting in the way of the things that are actually the most important?

Combining life and ministry makes for a busy, overwhelming endeavor, you don’t have room for things that don’t really help you accomplish what God has asked you to accomplish. The New Year is still new. And at the beginning of every year is a great time to look at your ministry and personal life (like I had to look at my phone) and determine what’s most important-what you will keep and what you will delete.

Thanks for loving students!

Kurt

@kurtjohnston

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