Lessons from the Packers
In my first post on this blog I told you guys that I am a HUGE Green Bay Packers fan! The fact is, I have been a huge Packers fan since I was a little kid. My mom grew up in Wisconsin so I inherited the tradition of the Packers. I “bleed green and yellow” so to speak! I would defend why the Packers are the best overall football team of All Time!
Every week, I wear the same Packers shirt because it is part of my tradition. My dog has a packers collar and leash. I follow the Packers’ players on Twitter. I watched with my family as Aaron Rodgers and the Packers won the Superbowl last year, and I continue to watch as the Packers REMAIN undefeated. I also nervously sit and worry when the games come down to a final drive with 58 seconds to go to win the game as it did yesterday against the Giants.
Now this post is not meant to just sit here and brag about my favorite football team. This post is not meant to debate the NFL football season. This post is not meant to figure out if Aaron Rodgers is a better quarterback that Brett Favre was. This is not the place to do that. This post is rather about emphasizing the things that I have learned from the Packers both on and off the field this season. I want to point out 4 things that I have learned from the Green Bay Packers as a lifetime fan, a Christian, and a youth pastor.
The fact is, the Packers have been the favorites since the beginning of the year. Everyone was predicting the Packers going back to the Superbowl, but that doesn’t mean that the Superbowl trophy was handed to them at the start of the season. Yesterday the Packers played without the lead for much of the game. However, at the end of the game with 58 seconds to go, looking at an overtime period if they didn’t score, the team went down the field and set up Mason Crosby for a 31 yard field goal. The point is, that there will be times in our time in ministry where everything seems to be stacked against us but you have to dig in and trust the people around you to get the job done.
2) Strive for Greatness
One of my favorite quotes of the season comes from all-star wide receiver Greg Jennings and it was simply, “Be Great.” Greg started a hash tag on twitter #begreat and this mantra defines everything that he does. Just about every day I read a tweet from Greg striving for another day of being great. For example, on December first he tweeted, “Find ways 2 continue chasing the “G” (
#Greatness) that God stores in u to unravel the best outcome on your life.I’m UNDEFEATED… #BeGreat.” We as people in ministry need to strive for the same level of excellence. Does greatness define your ministry or are you satisfied with a good ministry? I read a book a few years back by Jim Collins called Good to Great, and the concept behind this book is that, “Good is the enemy of great.” Don’t settle for a good ministry, strive for greatness in your student ministry!
3) Stay Humble
Your ministry may be thriving and that is awesome! You may be the ministry that everyone wishes they could be and you may be the youth pastor that all other youth pastors think their students want.
However, when things are going great, stay humble! The thing I appreciate about the Packers this season is that they keep things in-house! They know they are the favorites, they know they’re undefeated, and they know that every eye is on them. With all that pressure, the players keep saying, “We’re taking it one game at a time.” While many people say this, there is a genuineness about the Packers saying it. The attitude of the Packers comes from the leadership, and when you watch Mike McCarthy lead his team, there is a quiet dignity about it. Lead out of humility and your student ministry will follow.
4) Stay Hungry
It would have been very easy for the Packers to come in and have a good but not great season this year. They won the Superbowl last year with 6 straights wins, most of which were on the road. There was no offseason and the Packers came in and not only won but are undefeated. They have won 18 straight games going into last year! The players have a fire in belly and they are chasing history. It is very easy to become complacent in our ministry and do what has worked in the past. It is very easy to go into the office, surf the internet, write a lesson, and call it a week. Let’s be honest, youth ministry is what you make of it! You can do a lot or hardly anything but there was a reason you got into this business in the first place. You didn’t start ministry for the money, the praise, or the ease. This was at one point in time a passion, but is that fire in your belly still there? Stay hungry, and when times get tough keep on keeping on! Stay Hungry!
I don’t know what the Packers’ season will end up looking like, but as a fan, I am excited for the journey and excited about the lessons that I’m learning in the process.
Posted on December 5, 2011, in Leadership and tagged Christianity, Church, Church Ministry, Family Ministry, Football, Green Bay, Leadership, Packers, Pastor, Religion, Student Ministry, Youth Ministry, Youth Pastor, Youth Work. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.