Wednesday, March 18, 2009

"Youth Culture"

Reading through blog posts yesterday the question I found began fairly benignly...

"What percentage of your youth grow in mature adult Christians?"

The answer I found was even more astounding...(courtesy of this blog)

The fact that there is a "their" culture is largely "our" doing. Who worships youth? Adults. Who makes the shows, the songs, the technology, etc. forming/facilitating "their" culture? Adults. Who made even 'big' church into something that 'entertains then entertains some more?' Adults. Who made following Jesus into something you can supposedly do while remaining loyal to consumerism? Adults. Youth groups are just amped up versions of big church, trying to 'reach' a more media sophisticated, less religious, more energetic group.

Our adult lives say that Jesus and mission are a side dish on the buffet of life. I don't think youth ministries (or Western churches) have much hope outside of articulating a serious and compelling call to discipleship that involves naming and letting go of our various attachments and practice in the harder ways of Jesus, and pursuing that in very small, committed groups.

It is from this perspective that I think we have to look closely at what kind of church we are hoping to develop. We keep hyping the "youth culture", and I do appreciate and want to participate in songs that are lively, preaching that is "hip" and passionate, and ministry that takes an effect.

I disdain the model of church that separates out the classes and the ages. I want us to be a whole church, defined by our passion for the ministry and life of Jesus Christ. I realize that doing so means working within the existing constraints to try and push at the constraints where they are weak and need repair, removal or replacement. 

Now to get cracking on making the church the whole church.

ht: Erika



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