Following Blindly?

Ben —  February 29, 2012 — 4 Comments

People say, “I don’t get the Megachurch, it’s just a business” or better yet, “they’re just out there to sell songs and books.” Add these comments to many more about where Kim and I attend service on Sunday, and all we can think is “you just don’t get it, but I really wish you would.”

Photo credit: North Point Ministries

Then, add those common statements along with a few others that are just plain mean-spirited (not to mention ignorant) and mix it into comments about the environment Kim and I have invested our lives in, and you hear things like:

  • They don’t get deep enough into “The Word”
  • The message just skims the surface
  • The kids only go ’cause their friends are there
  • They’re only raising their hands because the rest of the crowd is raising their hands
  • The leaders are just immature adults
  • They sing because their friends sing

I could really go on an almost seemingly list from people looking at us from the outside, and create a detailed rebuttal about each statement, but instead I’ll tell you what happens on a regular basis: Our oldest daughter goes to church in “The Attic” at the same time Kim and I volunteer as small group leaders. Almost every Sunday I glance over and think to myself:

There you stand next to your friends and small group leader, with your hands raised and eyes closed. Singing your heart out. If only other parents could see their kids in this place…

This is a well thought out, proven student ministry strategy, and while some may think these kids are following blindly, I think “is THIS the new peer pressure?”

What I appreciate so much with the strategy of this ministry, is that I get to see first hand as a volunteer… that it works. Now as a parent, I’ll take this over the alternative every day.

What strategy does your church or ministry have to help influence the youth?

Looking for some help with your strategy? Check this out.


4 responses to Following Blindly?

  1. Ben, I grew up in a church where raised hands were common, but I never felt comfortable with it. To see my mom worshiping felt a bit embarrassing. (What DOESN’T embarrass a teen?) Fast forward to my own parenting years. I loved the worship at North Point and finally became comfortable with seeing others engaged in worship. It still just wasn’t for me.

    Then came the day that my own teen daughter stood beside me in the main service after she had been away at a teen retreat. She lifted her hands in praise and I have to say that something woke up inside me. It seemed a courageous thing for her to do beside her reserved mom – and it gave me the courage I had never had.

    Now, when I’m singing a song to God and imagining the day that I can see His face, I can’t imagine not reaching toward Him! Thanks to my daughter’s faith, mine is finally easy for me to express.

    I’m grateful for the student ministry that ultimately influenced us both!

  2. The megachurch has lots of haters. Heck, the church as a whole has them. To me, what we get out of God when we get together has nothing to do with “the church” but how WE as individuals approach our gatherings. If I go seeking God, I’ll find Him. If I go to worship, I’ll lift up holy hands unto His name. If I go to criticize, that’s just what I’ll do. In His word, God says that there will be tares among the wheat. Our job is not to tear out and destroy the tares. That’s God’s job. So while we often criticize the church, I’ve seen God move in powerful ways. People need to stop “looking” and start “worshiping”. We need to stop looking at the tares and start looking at the wheat. They’re there.

  3. Ben, thank you and your family for being involved with youth. Am glad that you “get it”.

    As a parent I’d much rather have my kids praising God and wanting to hang out at church because of “peer pressure” than smoking or vandalizing cars.

    Don’t let the haters get you down. You’re a good man.

  4. Hate that I am just reading this.

    Amen brother! This is spot on.

    The young people in the church are th future. In the church they can see the difference between right and wrong so at least they know the difference going into the world were so much wrong will be thrown at them. I would take the peer pressure from church like you said any day.

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