Wednesday Night Live extended (4/9)

Tonight was the second week in our Evangelism for My Life series. Our goal tonight was to explore the fear that can paralyze students from sharing their faith with their friends. I also sought to share several popular “styles” of evangelism (via a Skit Guys DVD that is laugh-out-loud-I-just-wet-my-pants-and- the-three-people-next-to-me funny at times. But always has a deep message and heart to each skit) with our teens that are pretty ineffective. The last element was to share the two main styles/forms of evangelism that they will see at work (large umbrella concepts), Roman and Celtic. Very (incredibly) briefly, Roman evangelism is based around large group events and engagements where a central speaker(s) shares a message of salvation with a large crowd with (usually) minimal interaction on the leader’s part. Celtic evangelism is based around the idea of “doing life” with others in community, building up solid relationships and earning the right to speak of salvation in people’s lives. These are very simplistic definitions, and I hope to write more on them in the future.

There were other elements to tonight. I had students pair up and find examples of people who were afraid in Scripture. We sang. We acted out Scripture (the Good Samaritan) We used a song by the OC Supertones (Spend it With You off the Loud and Clear album). And in the end… it feels like we missed the boat as a program tonight.

Many of our teens were distracted. A few weren’t and genuinely engaged the material, but for the most part, tonight felt like we were missing out. (I really want to get some feedback from our other leaders, and should get it this weekend). We have so many teens at different Spiritual levels that this series poses a challenge that a few of our teens are probably choosing not to engage because they are truly not ready to dive in headfirst. They are still content with the milk of being a baby Christian, and have not taken the steps to grow themselves beyond that stage.

Tonight serves to show me as a Youth Pastor that our conventional methods and models of Youth Ministry are not working very well anymore. The question becomes, where do we go from here? This summer we will be experimenting with our teens in a small group model/atmosphere, and we have some basic ideas for after that, but where do we go programatically from here? Tonight left me with tons of questions, which is not a bad thing. Just a little difficult. And in a way, I prefer difficult. Especially when compared to complacent.