Thursday, March 31, 2005
The words that we use....
As a paid youth worker I have a slight problem coming home.
The problem revolves around the words we use in church and how stupid they are.
I like to communicate with the congregation and let them know what is happening in the youth ministry. (always a good thing) It also allows them the chance to feel like they are doing a good thing, you know "look how good we are at youth ministry" or "look how many young people our church is bringing in on a sunday"
The problem is two fold. Firstly (I hope noone from my church is reading this :)) It is not the end goal of our ministry to get the young people to church on a Sunday morning. Shock horror. We also do not rate our success based on the usual church & salvation army young person scale. A young person is not a successful christian if they attend on sundays, or play in the band or any of those old outward criteria.
So I suppose we can call this problem "different world view" with the majority of people sitting in the pew on a sunday morning.
The second problem continues on from this first one. It is the language that we in the church use. They will want to know how many 'decisions' we had. They want a nice little summary of who made a decision so they can tick them off in their little prayer book. (maybe a bit to cynical and harsh, but you get my point)
Here is the part of the problem. We had one young person who has come to a few youth activities this term. She responded during one of the sessions at Easter camp.
The response was about breaking out of the box that we put ourselves into, had a cool symbolism of a cocoon and a butterfly finding its way out (it was well done). I would say that this response was aimed more at Christians and putting off baggage, giving it to Jesus and being set free.
This girl wasn't a Christian, but she made a choice to find out more about God and begin that journey. We are going to present her with a Bible on Sunday.
Then we had another one of our young people. She comes to literally everything we do. She has been around for 2 years. On the weekend she told us that she had 'given her heart to Jesus' only thing is this is the fourth time in 12 months she has done that. There was the youth alpha course, 2 youth alives and now easter camp.
Had a great discussion the other day in my class on Paul, his life and letters. (the apostle, in case you didn't get that)
We discussed whether he was converted or called by Jesus on the road to Damascus.
Some people complained that the discussion is meaningless, but it resonated with me. In the church we have reduced words from their true meaning. To be converted is to leave one religion and go to another (Paul didn't do this, he was always a Jew).
Neither of those young people left one religion and followed another.
one defintely felt God in a new and real way.
She made a choice, is that the same thing as a 'decision'?
God only knows
Wow sounds like I know who the 2nd youth is. (who was the first??). I think it's time to really talk to her about what it means to really be in a relationship with God. She's not getting off that base for some reason... start praying and figuring that out!
It was fun to read that blog. Man sometimes i really miss GREENSYYYYY ;-)
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