Today over lunch with one of my adult volunteers we started talking about how different youth groups identify themselves different ways. It seems to us that our youth ministry here in Minnesota currently identifies itself by what it does — it’s events, programs and activities. While that’s ok, I guess, what we really want is a youth ministry that’s identified by who it is, not what it does. For example, if I were to ask my youth group kids, “Why do you come to this youth group?” it’s our impression that right now we’d probably hear a variety of answers, mostly something like, “We like the games,” or “We think the Bible studies are cool,” or “We go on fun trips.” But what I really want our youth group to be identified by are characteristics of “being.” I want their answers to change to, “I come to this youth group because I know this is a place where I’m accepted,” or “I feel safe to be myself here,” or “These relationships really impact my spiritual growth.” And then what we do is determined by who we are, not the other way around.
Posted on February 28, 2007