I was looking at OMG: A Youth Ministry Handbook, when a question arrested my attention: "Do Our Practices of Youth Ministry Reflect Christ" (Dean 2010, v)? It was accompanied by a question of no lesser importance: "Do Our Practices of Youth Ministry Shape Christians" (Dean 2010, v)? These two were subheadings in the first chapter entitled, "Haunting Questions." Some of the ensuing discussion in the text related to whether or not our youth ministries enable youth to understand the uniqueness and characteristics of Christ and Christianity.
The ability or inability of a Christian youth ministry to communicate the uniqueness of Christ and Christianity natters. Of equal importance is the church's capacity to do this. These two are not as separate as it may seem on the surface. They impact each other. Moreover, it is hard to commit to something that is vague or non-existent. This reminds me of a blog post I did earlier when I noted the way in which growth in the Christian life and commitment to God in Christ Jesus often come at the bottom and made a link to what we teach.
I will pose this question therefore: As we go into 2011, how can we conduct our lives and teach in such a way that it is clear that "living is Christ and dying is gain" (Phil. 1:21)?
Loving God, Loving Neighbor