Endless youth group

The typical American youth ministry of the baby boom generation resembled an animal feeder (or maybe an animal trap). It was attractive as long as the bait didn’t run out. It was assumed that youth wouldn’t follow God without bribery, and even then, that they wouldn’t follow God very far. In a youth-obsessed, youth-glorifying society, the youth ministry was a holding tank for large children, with the vague hope that they would grow up someday, probably, inexplicably. But not now.

The lesson of recent history, however, have shown that baby boomers do not necessarily grow up. They may become politicians or even parents, but that doesn’t mean they become disciples. After being taught to live for themselves, to give God his fair share, and to keep the rest, they continue to follow the teachings of their youth. The church has become an endless youth group.

4 thoughts on “Endless youth group

  1. Bam! That’s the sound this post makes when somebody reads it. Outstanding observation and well stated. If you don’t object, I plan to extensively quote and link to this post from my blog in the days ahead.

  2. Wow! Great point – great observation! The wrong emphasis is placed on “the youth”, and it has been for a long while. I get so sick of watching “youth groups” walk around with spoons in their mouths balancing eggs through an obstacle course, playing kickball, and eating pizza for an hour or so, and then, just before they go, try to give them something…something from God’s Word. I’m not against enjoying ourselves with each other, but the emphasis [in my opinion] is heavily placed on the “a-musement” over the musing of God and His things.

    Just look at how much is done for the youth today…camps, age-segregated groups [hey, if they want to have fun, have them have fun with their parents and family…invite some friends!], parties, etc. Is that really a church’s job and responsibility? I thought we ALL, young and old, were supposed to be brought “in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to an fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to decieive” (Eph 4:13-14).

    You make a great point that many aren’t “growing up”. It’s harder and harder to find servants in God’s House nowadays. Too many are fine and content with just being served.

    May our young ones learn early the rich value of labor and of serving…others and Christ!

    –Again, great observation…

  3. I dunno. I don’t see it that way. My own church doesn’t function like this, nor any of the others I’ve been a part of over the years. I worked in youth ministry and camping ministry, so I know what they’re like. There may be some vestiges of them in some churches, but I simply don’t see the 1:1 correspondence in the majority of American churches.

  4. When I read “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me,” I don’t see the 1:1 correspondence in the majority of American churches either. Judging from your blog, Dan, I don’t think you do either.

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