A Day in the Life of a Youth Pastor

by Olufunmilayo

My mouth feels dry as I turn and wake through the silky stealth of my duvet cover. It is another Sunday morning. I already feel defeated before the day starts. I look at my wife. She is breathing peacefully as she sleeps. I am fake. She deserves better than me. I think to myself. Through her longing looks, the continued impression is that she thinks the world of me. I sigh. I want to tell her of my struggles. But, how can I? I am sure it will crush her. I am sure she would be so disappointed to know that last night, after our 7- days dry fast, I could not help myself again. While she sleeps beside me, I turn to my phone to watch my dirty video stash while I jerk off quietly.

Today, I am teaching “righteousness and holiness” to the youth in the church. They also look up to me and tell me of their struggles during our counseling sessions. I tell them, “Trust God – read your bible and pray every day. The more of the Spirit you have, the less of sin in you.” I feel so hypocritical. I have been born-again since I was 16. I am now 42. I am still in search of victory over this sin in my life. Look at my son. He is now a teenager. How do I genuinely tell him to live a holy life when I don’t know how to? I think this must have been how Paul felt in Romans 7:24:

“Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death?”

I get up and walk to my study to begin to pray. I start with Psalm 51 and echo the words of David as I ask for forgiveness of my sins from last night. As I close my eyes and pray in tongues, scenes from the videos I enjoy flash in my mind. I get turned on again. I switch immediately to praying in my understanding. I rebuke the devil and his thoughts. I quote Philippians 4:6-7 while confessing vehemently that I think on things that are true, noble, excellent…. Then I break out in tears. I cry. Not from the weight of my sins. I cry. Knowing that I’ve been through this cycle for over 24 years now. I cry. Because I know my prayers are futile. I cry. I will still fall again before the week runs out. I cry. Because I don’t understand why God would not let me stop sinning in this abhorrent way. I cry. For I want to know the way out.

My ministration is powerful. The young men and women from the campus fellowship are in tears as I preach my sermon passionately. I shout, “Without holiness, it is impossible to see the Lord… who can ascend into the hill of the Lord? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart… my brothers and sisters, you cannot see the Lord, if there is sin lurking in your life – come out before the Lord and confess your sins to him – tomorrow may be too late”. As they troop out, I speak in tongues. I feel the Holy Spirit flow through me as I begin to speak some word of knowledge. I relay specific issues in the lives of the growing crowd flocking to the altar area in front of me. As I speak, ladies are gnashing their teeth in regret and gasping for air. They confess all sorts of atrocities. The men on their knees are groaning. I join them. Agonizing on my knees. I pray with them. They don’t know. My pain isn’t just for theirs. I am praying for myself too. I feel the burden I carry to church gradually lift.

I drive my wife and two children home as we listen to Dunsin Oyekan’s new album. I think of my life’s journey in and with God, about how much He uses me mightily. I know that I love God and sincerely want to serve Him and live life for His pleasure. I think of the times I tell mentors about my struggles and when they pray for me. I think of the word God once told me while in prayers. That He has delivered me already from all sins. I think of when the reality of this revelation, this assurance, would become flesh. I think of the new week about to start.

As I turn to enter my compound, I gently whisper the words, “God, help me to please you this new week.”

8 Replies to “A Day in the Life of a Youth Pastor

  1. The pastor has to tell his wife. That should be non-negotiable. They could get a mentor, pastor or whoever he defers to in authority involved together. I know he already did, but next time, he should be with his wife. No matter how constant his struggles, his openness must match it. There must be no room for secrecy.

    Secondly, he needs to come off pulpit too and avoid the decietfulness of spiritual service. He should work on personal restoration. Open himself to the light of God’s word that brings healing, for a definite divine encounter and embrace the discipline of self control, which would include saying No to some media content, relationships and “parties”.

    Every sin problem is a knowledge problem. He has God’s promise of help, that is guaranteed in Christ Jesus. May His eyes of understanding be enlightened. Amen.

    1. Dear Seun, thanks for your comment. Indeed, I believe he should tell his wife. But beyond that, there’s still the unresolved issue in itself. The issue that has ailed him for 2 decades and more. In your 2nd paragraph, media connect, no to parties and relationships in themselves are not the cause of his problems, and while abstaining from these might bring a temporary break, they do not deal with the heart of the issue.

      I think you’ve addressed the real thing that must happen. He must bring his sin under God’s surgery for total destruction of the flesh that produces sin in him. He must stay there and appropriate the finished works of Christ till his mind knows and understands the total victory that has been given in Christ. Without this understanding and realization, he might keep going in circles and think there really is no permanent help for him in God.

  2. Hmmm🥰I’m trying to see my christian life as not a race cause I’m just realizing that I’m not in competition with no one… pleasing God and doing things his way should not bother me but be my priority.(not eyes service) I love your piece and I’m hoping to read more to come

    1. Thanks Joe! It indeed is not a race and our one desire should be to please God both privately and publicly. God bless

  3. Hmmmm… Addictive sexual sin is a slippery slope, especially for the young. He’s done well returning to God again and again, and not giving up on God.

    But there is more.

    There is a place of accountability to God but there is also a place of accountability to His spouse and a mature mentor. There is a place for revelational knowledge and a place for practical wisdom. There is a place for resisting the devil and a place for fleeing youthful lust. There is place for resting in the finished work and a place for aligning with the continuous work of the Spirit.

    And that is why God gave gifts to the body. In humility, he should seek help.

  4. Thanks Tim Ola Bam, totally agree with you. The solution has many prongs to it following the resting in the finished work of Christ.
    By the way, what should he do about those who come to him for counsel? Should he turn them away or still keep them accountable to himself while he seeks help?

  5. Indeed “every sin problem is a knowledge problem” I strongly agree with seun on this. Even devil the father of sin thrives on ignorance. When we know as we ought to know we stay in charge.

    I believe telling his wife not just as a confession but also as a means of seeking for her support to overcome this sin is very key.Deu. 32:30. And I pray the wife is matured enough to stand in the gap.

    Also, there are two perspectives to sin just as it is with salvation. Romans 10:10. You believe in your heart and that settles you in the Spirit realm; scripture says you are justified you equally have to confess with your mouth to be saved. So the issue has been resolved in the Spirit realm with God a long time ago but there is an urgent need for him to KNOW that and work with that knowledge. Telling his wife will then be the demonstration of the knowledge of his embraced victory because he has been empowered to overcome so he needs to rise up and overcome. His prolonged cries and prayers might not bring any new result because God already heard him. (Hebrews 8:12) and God does not have a record of him with that sin… this explains why he still has the grace to do exploit for God in preaching and demonstration of his gifts.He only need to understand this and stand where God expect him to be and remain there until his mind fully catches up with his spirit because the battle has been won in the Spirit with a discharge of enough grace and power to fight in the physical (our mind,the battle field). So that he has prayed is not the end of the discussion he need to fight (with knowledge) this time not for victory but from victory.

    1. Dear Yetunde, thanks for the exhaustive comment. Hmm, very deep thoughts here on the battle field of the mind and that the fight needs to be from a place of victory is profound. I pray that all who are in the quandary of any addiction will come to this truth and live in full victory that Jesus has bought for them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *