Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Canceling Youth Group

We're canceling youth group tonight. Well, sort of. The two local junior high schools that the majority of our students attend are playing each other in football. So we're not having youth group at the church building. Instead, we're gathering together at the football game and encouraging the players (and cheerleaders) that are a part of our church body by watching their game.

There are parents in the stands to have conversations with, new students to get to know. Sure, there are students that don't attend either school. I also don't attend either school. So we can still hang out together for two hours and cheer on our friends, since God's kingdom is bigger than rival junior highs.

Most importantly, this is incarnational youth ministry. We're leaving the church walls behind and entering the world of the students. We don't have a program or an agenda apart from spending time with students. It's somewhat nerve-wracking, because it requires that youth workers leave the safe arena of "youth group," where we have a sense of authority and control, and are entering the students' turf with humility. The volunteer staff learn a ton about students and their culture. Even though it's scary at times, we're trying to communicate that we love these kids through proximity and a willingness to be with them.

What if we cancelled youth group more often in order to spend time in our community? What if a church cancelled their Sunday services in order to serve in their city? What if we took a short break from something great to do something potentially greater?

No comments:

Post a Comment