Terminate communication with “humor”

Communication terminatedKen Sapp posted a good list of ways to lose contact with students, but I’d like to add one more to it: Joke around about sensitive issues like abortion and homosexuality.

I’ll never forget one conversation I had many years ago with a [tag]junior high[/tag] student who was active in another youth ministry. He struggled with his sexual identity, not sure if he was more attracted to girls or guys and was toying with the idea of adopting homosexuality as a potential lifestyle. After listening to his stories I asked, “Have you talked with your [tag]youth pastor[/tag] about this?” He immediately responded, “Oh no, I can’t tell him about this. I was going to say something to him last year, but then I overheard him make fun of a gay guy.”

Mental note self: NEVER make fun of issues like homosexuality and [tag]abortion[/tag]. It’s inappropriate and there’s no telling how careless “humor” can terminate someone from ever seeking Godly help.

Posted on September 30, 2006

  • I recently had a conversation with several of my guys because of their use of phrases like “O you’re so gay” and about how they would joke around like they were gay and then laugh. I am actively trying to reach out to an openly homosexual guy in our local high school, but I am worried about the atmosphere he will find if he does come to church.

  • Good advice Tim. We always have to be careful to be Christlike in everything we do. We fall short so many times we can only pray that the kids that follow us fall in love with who we follow and understand we are human like them. We're gonna make mistakes.

    Dealing with insensitive students on issues like homosexuality really should be like everything else. I cringe when my students make fun of anyone for any reason. Even if they know each other well and they are clearly joking around, others may not understand.

    I had to face this many times when I first came to my current church about 4 years ago. For some reason, there was a small group of friends that enjoyed laughing at other people. They could dish it out, but they couldn't take it. The only thing I could do was reinforce through my words and sermons that Jesus wouldn't make fun of people or put them down.

    Good post.

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