Wednesday, October 22, 2008

"To begin with, the church has a youth group.."

I don't know what it might mean for many friends who are officially (or organically) youth pastors of some sort....but Rob Bell and Don Golden have earned the right to be wrestled with:

"Imagine the average youth group in the average church on the average Sunday.
Imagine visiting his youth group and having the pastor say to you, 
'I just can't get my kids interested in Jesus.  Do you have any suggestions?'

How do you respond?

To begin with, the church has a youth group.

This is a brand new idea in church history.  A luxury.  Everybody in the church doesn't meet all together?  All of the babies and older folks and men and women and widows and students aren't in the same room, but they've gone to separate rooms?

And there are resources for this?  People and organizational structures and a budget?  Let's imagine that in this case, this pastor. this youth pastor, is paid a salary for his or her work.
A church with enough resources to pay someone to oversee the students?  Once again, this is brand new, almost unheard of in most of the churches in the world, and in church history, a brand new invention..

..And so each week they gather to hear a talk by the pastor.

The pastor tells them about the Jesus revolution.

About Jesus resisting the system.

About the blood of the cross.

About many of the first Christians getting arrested.

...How do children of the empire understand the Savior who was killed by an empire?
..How do they fathom that half the world is too poor to feed its kids when their church just spent two years raising money to build an addition to their building?

They gather, they sing, they hear a talk from the pastor, and then they get back in the car with their parent and they go home; the garage door opens up, the car goes in, and the garage door goes down.

This is the revolution?

How do you respond?

Your only hope, of course, would be to remind him or her that there is blood on the doorposts of the universe."

(Rob Bell and Don Golden, Jesus Came to Save Christians, pp.137-8)

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Hey, thanks for engaging the conversation!