Youth Ministry Dissonance

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Joseph_Botwinick, Apr 26, 2006.

  1. Shiloh

    Shiloh
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    It reads to me like this guy is right on target. So many times today we are giving our kids what they want not what they need. That's because we are the same way. We are only in this life for a very short time and we are commanded to "work out our own Salvation" in this life for our position in eternity. However we [​IMG] are trying to keep as close to this world and induldge in it's activities as possible and stay on good graces with our Heavenly Father. That's why we "change" the Bible to meet OUR desires and why we read what we do in Rev.3:16.
     
  2. rbell

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    His experience with the shaving cream and evangelistic event...indicative of a student ministry not recognizing an event's purpose and tailoring the components towards that end.

    Shaving cream war? Great--in a fellowship-centered, informal gathering. But with JH students, just before an evangelistic event? Stupid.

    I'm restating one of his points here...we've overhyped the idea of "fellowship" into a crazy free-for-all...when biblically it's more about an intimate accountability to God, and His word, played out through Christian relationships.
     
  3. mama9times

    mama9times
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    This is one reason we are leaving our current church!
     
  4. tinytim

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    The only time I have ever had a shaving cream battle is the last night of youth camp....
    It serves 2 purposes.... 1) it is fun...

    2) The kids have to take a shower at least that last night!
     
  5. Seth&Mattsmom

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    The shaving cream hairdo stuff is just how I remember the youth group that did not teach me how to be in the real world as a new Christian.

    I remember "swirlies" that is having your head in the toilet as it is flushed. Thank goodness I was not paet of that. Singing feel good praise songs and a little ice breaker. Then a talk by someone, and I can honestly say that I do not remember ONE single talk.

    I do remember the small group study we had, but alas, it was ran by a young woman that still had a lot of growing up to do herself. She was newly married and just a few years later got divorced.

    I agree wholeheartedly with this article, and I hope so much that when the time comes for me to lead a teen (I will have 3 of my own one day) that I can remember all of this and be able to teach solid truth, not just entertain.
     
  6. PastorSBC1303

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    What is the difference between this event and having a fish fry and a southern gospel sing trying to bring in adults?
     
  7. Joseph_Botwinick

    Joseph_Botwinick
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    Good question.

    Probably not much.

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  8. PastorSBC1303

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    I think the author makes some good points.

    However, I think we should be careful to realize this is not a "Youth Ministry" problem.

    It is a total church problem.
     
  9. Joseph_Botwinick

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    I agree. Since, however, the author was writing the article for a youth ministry resource organization, he obviously focused on the issue within youth ministry.

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  10. tinytim

    tinytim
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    I agree with rbell above... There is a time for having fun... but whoever planned this didn't think ahead, or they would have seen the outcome.

    It could just be a case of inexperience..
    Doug Fields writes in his book "My first two years of youth ministry" about an episcode of having a pizza party in the baptistry.

    We, that have been in youth ministry can relate to stupid things we did, that now we regret.

    But I don't have to worry now, because I'm sure senior pastors never make mistakes and do stupid things! :D :eek:

    But I have to say that if this is habitual, then there is a real problem, one that probably originates within the church.

    There is a time and place for fun, but right before a evangelistic event is not one.
     
  11. rbell

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    I met with a few of my "old youth" from 15 years ago last month. I officiated at a wedding for one of them. We talked about the old times, the fun (and silly/stupid) things we did, some of the amazing times we had, and pretty much everything in between.

    The conclusion I reached: We're writing a story--a long, long story. Hopefully, we have several years to impact these kids. We make some typos, and mess up along the way. Sometimes we don't write the story so well. But through it all, most of these kids "got it." They saw a recurring theme...that there was a God out there, who loved them like crazy, and desired a relationship with them. They also saw a church (at least several folks in the church) who loved them, and wanted them to be a part of the family...not a group that was "tacked on" to the church roster, but a real part of the family, that loved them. Most of these kids enjoyed the occasional "yuk party" (our "shaving cream war" event) as well as the worship service that lasted 3 hours 'cause God wasn't through yet, and lots of other stuff--ministry, missions, discipleship, togetherness, pain, love, everything. Most of these kids I talked to (now adults with families, in church, a couple of them in ministry, and two in missions), got it.

    Seth&Mattsmom, one difference between your experience you mentioned and what I saw with this gang...these kids weren't the "recipients" of a "youth program." These kids received an investment--by some adults that loved them, stuck with them, and saw things through. Some of the stuff you mentioned--I'm sorry you had to experience it. Some of it's awfully close to hazing--other parts of it was just silly (not evil, but definitely not appropriate for every time or season).

    Maybe I just expect too much, but I think that many churches don't recruit/hire/develop student pastors that have enough wisdom. Just because someone is "young, full of energy, and knows how to relate to kids"--not enough!!! Go get you a spiritual giant that can invest in the kids' lives...help them through the rocky times, show them the how's and why's of God's provision for us...and love on the kids and cry with them when our answers are insufficient.
     

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