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Getting Older and Wiser


The young minister and the seasoned pastor each face unique frustrations and temptations—and each has unique opportunities

—R. Kent Hughes

Our youth pastor, Dennis, came to me recently. "I want to rappel off the church," he said, "off the fourth story!" It was to be a scene for a youth video he was making, he explained.

I could have easily said no. First, it was dangerous. (I like to give my staff room to fail, but this gave a whole new meaning to the idea.) Furthermore, people could justifiably criticize me for allowing such crazy activities. But I decided the risk was worth it. Dennis is a creative guy. He relates well to the kids, and his idea was a culturally hot item. In addition, he was young and capable of the feat.

"Just check with the custodian," I said, "to make sure the rope won't come loose and the building won't be damaged."

So he did it. With a Santa Claus hat on his head, he backed off the roof of our four-story building and rappelled to the ground. The video was outrageous, ...

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