Why I Am Still Not Rah-Rah Over the Campus Missionary Movement (At Least Not as We Know It Still in 2007)

Originally published September 2007.

Back in 2001 I wrote a Pair of Cleats that had been stirring in me for quite some time. I labored, studied, and prayed over what was stirring in me and the fruit was the most negatively received Pair of Cleats ever entitled, “Why I’m Not Rah-Rah Over the Campus Missionary Movement.” Not that this bothered me. I felt peace after the sweat labor from working through all of my supposed-to thoughts mixed with what I was seeing and learning. As Wild Frontier and out-there those thought were, I was confident of what I wrote. Even if others weren’t.

Six years later I still am. So I bring my thoughts to you again with an added six-more-years perspective. I am now starting my 27th year of youth ministry and I’m in my 15th year as a substitute teacher in the public school system. I still believe strongly in the Wild Frontier lifestyle which is to live your life beyond human limits.

Be a Blessing to Your School

Originally published August 2003.

The big reason why youth workers love high schools is that they are full of teenagers.  There are lots of teenagers all gathered in one place.  Hence youth ministry has a large focus on the high school.

More often than not though, our agenda for the high school is not the same agenda of those who work in the school system have, particularly the administration.  Their vision (and mandate) is to educate students and they need all the help possible to achieve that goal.  The school has their mandated responsibility of education but they are also daily fighting losing battles with attitudes, violence, apathy, and various crimes.  Just to name a few.  Add to that multi-cultural teaching, sex education issues, character education, etc.  These are also mandated but they take away from education time.

Beyond Summer Camp Ministry

Originally published April 2000.

The question has now been put out there.  Any veteran in youth ministry may have already had the thought but Time Magazine put it in print.  Is the teenager disappearing?  Is the age of sweet 16, slumber parties (girls only, not mixed), and hours of car talk becoming something of another time?  The life stage of teenager has only been around for 50 years, but will it be around much longer?

We are seeing the changes first hand.  Boys and girls are becoming men and women physically between the ages of 10 to 13.  Most ten year olds are not even invited to our youth meetings yet.  Many high schoolers are getting into their career jobs while still in high school.  My high school hires students to do their computer networking and webwork.  Students are doing work on their teachers’ computers and getting paid.  Think about that.