This was originally posted on one of my other blogs: http://lifepathministries.blogspot.com
Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.- 1 Timothy 4:12 (NIV)
Some time ago, as we were developing a evangelism program called Youth-N2-Action, I shared the general concept with my children. They were in middle school at the time and found it difficult seeing themselves as evangelists. They had tagged along with me and had learned a lot about sharing the gospel through good works with the homeless and others, even door-to-door evangelism. Yet, I realized in that one conversation that they had been educated about salvation and evangelism methods but not edified to the point where they were comfortable and confident sharing it with their peers. Sadly, they are not alone when we look at the state of many of our Christian youth today.
We tend to sell our youth short. I say “we” because I have been guilty of it myself as well. Yet, there is a biblical solution. We need to engage our youth to become equipped and empowered to share the Word where they have influence. We need to teach and train young people to share the gospel on their own level and in their own way.
Our people must learn to do good by meeting the urgent needs of others; then they will not be unproductive.- Titus 3:14 (NLT)
If something doesn’t change in the way that we REACH teenagers, the statistics indicate that in just 5-7 short years we could see only 4% of this generation being bible-believing Christians.- http://ernestdebra.blogspot.com/2007/01/youth-statistics.html
“Our continuing research among teenagers and adolescents shows that the trend away from adopting biblical theology in favor of syncretic, culture-based theology is advancing at full gallop.” “Americans draw theological beliefs from diverse points of view” (Barna Research Online) October 8, 2002. – http://www.crossroad.to/charts/church-statistics.html
In a recent study 50 percent of American teens 13-17 report attending a local faith community within the past seven days.- http://www.religion-online.org/showarticle.asp?title=2929
I believe that one day we will stop telling our teens what they shouldn’t do and who they shouldn’t hang around. We’ll start teaching and training them to be like Christ. Who ate with tax collectors and sinners? Who touched the untouchable and unclean? let them follow Jesus’ example and live out their faith. Teach them to share their faith with confidence. Help our youth to become ambassadors for Christ as they inspire and influence others for the sake of the Lord.
I am living, born-again proof that it works.