In a culture so full of jargon, more information is the last thing we need. But what Colby Dill is proposing in this post is something that may remove this great barrier between the young and old. Many pastors and youth pastors ask how to reach this generation. It’s not cut and dry, but perhaps this post will shed some light on the how.
I was teaching my Sunday school one morning, and the youth that were there were the ‘backbones’ of the youth group. I had attended the youth group myself since I was in 4th grade. And now I sat before some of the youth that I had grown up with in this youth group. These were the young men and women who had stuck through the thick and thin of the past history of the Ground Zero Youth Ministry. As I began teaching, I truly believe the Lord gave me a question to ask the whole group. This question is not one that you would normally hear asked to a youth group or to a Christian, in fact. This question is a question that you could be looked down upon for asking. Your wondering what the question was, huh?
“What do you hate about being a Christian?” Now, when you read that, some things might have come up in your mind and spirit. Things like, “Hold on, how can you ask something like that?” or “That’s not biblical. Your causing people to put down God’s holy religion!” I am going to explain why I asked this question later on down the line, but I will finish the story first. So after I asked the question, I could just see the shock on all the faces that were in the room. I said, “Come on, give me some feed back.” As soon as I said that, hands shot up. The comments were amazing!!! The youth were just being…….real. It seemed that they almost felt like they could express how they felt about being a Christian without any condemnation being brought upon them. They started saying things like, “Well, it just feels like I have to obey all these rules” or “When I mess up, God just hates me or doesn’t like me as much” or “Always feeling like I can’t make it in life. That being a Christian is just too hard.” Now mind you, these are young men and women who have been in the church for more than 5 to 10 years. You might ask, whose fault is it? The church? The leaders (youth pastor, pastor)? Here is my answer to that question: As the body of Christ, we have failed to bring the REALITY of who God is to the young generation. Not only to the young generation, but to the older generations, as well. The reason I felt impressed to ask that question was to bring forth the reality that was in the youth’s hearts. I wanted to see how they really felt about serving the King of kings. Leaders, pastors, or anybody in some type of leadership, we have the obligation to bring forth the reality of who God is. BUT…the young generation, or any generation, needs to rip the feeding tube out of the pulpit or teacher, and needs to get connected with the revelation of God. We need to start preaching and teaching GOD!!! Not what our understanding is of God, but true revelation of God. Youth are walking around thinking that being a Christian is all about obeying and following rules. And if we were honest with ourselves, some of us feel the same way. “That’s not true! We all love God! All Christians serve and love God with everything they have!” You know, part of my testimony is that I was a hypocrite for a long period of my life. I was a two-face. Anybody can put a smile on their face and call themselves a “Christian,” but behind closed doors, we are nothing but two-faced sinners. Let’s just be honest. WE ARE NOT IN LOVE WITH GOD! Why? Because we don’t know Him. We have depended on sermons and Saturday devotions to get us through. We have to depend on and KNOW God. I can say I know about Will Smith, but I don’t KNOW him. Millions of people know about God, but they don’t know God. And I’m not talking about the non-Christians. If you call yourself a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, start plugging your heart into the knowledge of God, from God. That’s the cry of my heart. I WANT MORE OF GOD!!! The point of “The Question” was to show the reality of our hearts. We have to get plugged into the reality of God. So, we have to run after the true revelation of God. We cannot depend on people to give us this revelation. We have to search it out ourselves. Youth pastors and pastors, everything you say has to be from revelation from the Lord. I cannot express that enough. You are teaching and presenting the Word of God. Your own words cannot be expressed, only His. So let us, as a body, ask questions to bring forth the reality of our hearts SO THAT His reality can be implanted.