God Doesn't Care About Young People...Just Saying.


Stop believing the narrative. God doesn’t care about young people.  God cares about all people.  
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I was a youth pastor for nearly a decade.  I love hanging out with children's ministries and youth ministries.  I love being involved with Scouting ministries too.  But the way society creeps up on us and influences the Church is often so subtle we’d miss it.  And, we usually do.

I have read for years about the “greying of the church” and lamentations about the pews growing older.  I have heard in every church, of every size how what is keeping the Church of Jesus Christ growing is the lack of young people.  And, yes, I do grieve the lack of young people.  I do wish there were more.

But the man who threw the great banquet in Jesus’ parable didn’t waste much time when people didn’t come.  Take a moment and read his solution...

But when you give a feast,  invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind,14and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid  at  the resurrection of the just.”
15When one of those who reclined at table with him heard these things, he said to him,  “Blessed is everyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!”16But he said to him,  “A man once gave a great banquet and invited many.17And at the time for the banquet he  sent his servant to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’18But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a field, and I must go out and see it. Please have me excused.’19And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to examine them. Please have me excused.’20And another said,  ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’21So the servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in  the poor and crippled and blind and lame.’22And the servant said, ‘Sir, what you commanded has been done, and still there is room.’23And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled.24For I tell you,  none of those men who were invited shall taste my banquet.’” (Luke 14:13-24, ESV)

We often observe how Jesus grew the Church starting with some fishermen, a tax collector and a traitor.  He hung out with drunks and prostitutes.  Yes, Jesus was concerned people would turn children away BUT even Jesus did not say the future of the church is dependent on young people.

The future of the Church is dependent on lost people being found by the grace and love of Jesus Christ.  Nothing else is going to “save” the Church...that is, even IF the Church needs saving.  My friend, Morgan Guyton has a great title for his book: “How Jesus Saves the World from Us.”  Morgan has an important prophetic voice and I encourage you to read it and prepare to be challenged but sometimes a title says it all. Maybe the Church simply needs to be saved from us.

We need to stop coming up with solutions based on false narratives about what the Church of Jesus Christ needs. I'm glad Jesus' solution to the world's problem was never dependent on an age group or ageism. There are many issues worth addressing in the Church.  I tend to not think the greying of the Church is an issue.  While I learn from young people, the mentors I trust are older people, greyed people and wrinkled folks. As a spiritual director, I have found my own life challenged and renewed by being in the presence of those older and truly wiser.  Jesus never seems to have an issue with older people.  I wonder why it is we seem to?  



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