5 to 1

We’ve got a problem here at Good Shepherd…a big problem. We’re really good at Bible study. We’ve got years of life experience and skills that others don’t have. We party hard when others celebrate and are saddened when others grieve. We might just be too talented for our good. We even pray for God’s will, not our own.

Wait, this is a problem?

In short…YES!

Why? I’m glad you asked.

The landscape of the world has changed…we all know that it has. Time seems to move faster now.

Did you ever watch “The Walton’s”? If not, it’s a TV show from the early 70’s that takes place during the Great Depression. It’s about a large family trying to make it in a changing world. (You might want to binge watch it now, then come back to this when you’re done). Each family member had a unique personality, talents, skills, passions and perspectives. They shared a common vision; they didn’t want to merely survive, they wanted to thrive—from John-Boy all the way to little Elizabeth.

Here’s where I tell you the hard truth. You need to hear it. They need you to hear it. It needs to be said…and it needs to be heard. Are you hearing me? Please listen with ears of grace, wisdom and a passion to see God’s Kingdom a reality here on earth.

Studies have shown that teenagers don’t feel supported by adults in their church home.

Ouch.

What if John Walton never taught Jim-Bob how to fix a car engine? Jim-Bob would search for someone that would.

If Mary-Ellen didn’t have Grandpa Walton’s presence in her life…there is no way she would ever had reached her fullest potential and dreams.

They need you (teenagers not the Waltons). They need you and you need them.

Let me say it again.

They need you and you need them.

The landscape of the world has changed, but not that much. We still need each other.

So what’s the answer to the problem (see paragraph #1).

You are the answer…more accurately 5 of You.

Here’s the vision; you, me, teenagers…we need to stop trying to survive and start thriving together.

What if every teenager that calls Good Shepherd their home had 5 adults they knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, had their back. What if they trusted 5 adults from Good Shepherd?

What if we all changed the landscape together? Not to the way it was before. Not like it is now. What if we prayed ‘not our will, but yours be done’…and really meant it?

Here’s my prediction. Teenagers will have a better shot at having a faith that lasts a lifetime. Adults…we can be the ones to help them do it, and maybe become more who God made us to be.

You’ll be hearing more about this 5:1 ratio in the near future. My prayer is that God shows you that you have a story to share with a kid, you have a skill to teach, you have wisdom to pass on and that you have the ability to encourage and support a teenager to give them their best shot at life long faith in Jesus.

Josh Higgins
Director of Student Ministries

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2 Comments

Lance Ferm on March 25th, 2017 at 12:18pm

Good article Josh. Since teenagers must have questions about different religions why not have a comparative religion session where all questions will be welcome. Since teenagers are being brainwashed in our secular schools, why not have them bring questions about politics so that answers can be given from a Biblical perspective. Teenagers may also be interested in a different perspective for origins from a creation science perspective (icr.org). I believe we can engage teenagers from a inquisitive manner that will appeal to them.

Joanne Echevarria on March 25th, 2017 at 12:10pm

I do feel sorry for the teenagers of today. Their parents seem to have been too busy to support them emotionally. They give them a lot of things, but not their time. It sounds like a good program.