Dealing with the Heart

 This year more than others feels like it’s the beginning in so many ways. Based on what I’ve seen, a lot of teens are coming out of this past year learning to re-engage in life. How to make friends, where to eat lunch at school, feeling comfortable going to an after school club - you name it, it’s a relearning. School life has looked for the most part normal this fall compared to the past almost two years. But there’s still nervousness, trepidation, loneliness, and broken hearts. Imagine all those small things you got to look forward to at school - grad events, trips, normal lunch hours - being taken away by things out of your control. That’s where everyone is coming from. It’s a hard thing to try to “fix”, but fixing is rarely the point. The journey to that is the point and I am so grateful to have the opportunity to meet them where they’re at and invest in these broken heart moments.

While Kirstie and I were talking about this she added her usual wisdom, but this time you get to hear it from her as well:

“There are so many reasons that people come into the hospital to see a doctor - symptoms of an acute condition, like shortness of breath in a pneumonia patient - just like there are many reasons why a kid might need to see a youth worker. But the biggest difference is that, in so many aspects of medicine and healthcare, there is a cause, an effect, a standardized treatment, and healing. In the hospital, we literally have pre-printed flow sheets that we can follow to treat certain symptoms of acute conditions. But youth work is not that simple, although I wish it were. Where nursing and medicine deals with the body, youth work deals with the heart, and there are no preprinted orders for how to help someone when their heart has been broken, when their trust in their family, or their friends, or their classmates or teachers has been damaged. Youth workers have to be there, even when they don’t know what to say. They are working off faith that God is with them and guiding them through every conversation.”

For myself, I feel these beginnings in new relationships and connections with youth and hearing all the new stories of heartbreak. Try as we might with programs and philosophies to do our best, we are at our best for these teens when we’re living and walking in faith. And of course, being comfortable with the unknown.

It’s been a full season so far for me with the restarting of Creative Life in a new location (with new people), new Lifeteam interns joining me at school and with programs, and a new role with YLab at YFC national. There’s a lot of new beginnings and thankfully that all goes into nurturing, supporting, and pouring back into teens in the community- so it’s all worth it.

Thank you so much for your role in all of this, in my life, my family’s, the lives of teens here, and our small team here in Langley. We are so grateful. If you haven’t yet, flip this around and check out our info on YUNite Out. We’re hoping to raise money as a team to support the programs here in Langley that put the right people in place so no youth has to feel displaced. 

Wouldn’t that be amazing?

- Jon Pue


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