The Hidden Danger in Replacing Youth Ministry With Family Ministry

ChurchLeaders | 5/16/2018 | Staff
Nighty (Posted by) Level 3
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Before I dive into my point, let me make one thing crystal clear: I believe that the family should be the number one influence on the spiritual development of our children and teenagers. Deuteronomy 6:4-9 was written to the moms and dads of Israel in the Old Testament and is a powerful reminder to all of us moms and dads in the New Testament that spiritual development starts in the home.

If the teenagers in your church have believing parents, it’s on them to “bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). We, as parents, should never delegate this sacred duty to a 25-year-old youth leader straight out of seminary. In a perfect world, parents would work in conjunction with youth leaders to build teenagers who are fully committed to and maturing in Christ.

World - World - Dreams - Families - World

But we don’t live in a perfect world. We live in a world of broken dreams and broken families. We live in a world where many of the teenagers who attend our youth meetings don’t come from a Christian family…and, sadly, too many of the ones who do don’t have a solid, solvent Christian faith modeled to them by their parents.

In these far-more-often-than-we’d-like-to-admit real life situations, youth leaders can become the primary spiritual influence on our teenagers. They become the key role models and mentors. They become the game changers in the lives of our teenagers.

Teenagers - Father - Time - Years - Mom

I was one of those teenagers growing up. I never knew my biological father (abandoned us before I was ever born). Up until the time I was 15 years old, my mom was not a Christian. But the adult leaders in our church poured themselves into me and the other teenagers in our youth group, many of whom also came from broken, unbelieving families.

So what’s the danger of...
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