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Church Leadership

Why Christianity Works

On my trip up the West Coast we’ve been meeting with youth workers in a variety of settings and a wide variety of types of youth ministries. And in those conversations we talk about what’s going on in their ministry, what they are teaching, what’s working, and what isn’t.

Now, youth workers love people. And they don’t just want to talk about themselves– so invariably they in turn ask me the same types of questions.

Here is one thing that has stimulated our high schoolers thoughts lately. This video actually covers the last month of our teaching in just 3 minutes.

A funny sidenote. As I’ve talked about before, our high school ministry is working hard to not just talk about Good News but to literally be good news to the students in our ministry. All of our core kids have limited church background. And every week God reveals a new way we need to be good news in order for the gospel to be Good News in their lives.

So, last week we taught the third portion of this video– that Jesus came to make a way to restore our hearts as well as the world around us.

In our small group time I gave an example from my own life about what it would look like if the Gospel penetrated into the way I think about being a dad compared to the way that I was brought up. A few of my students were really tracking with that because there is something within them that wants to be better fathers to their future kids than they’ve experienced.

As one of my kids got it, he blurted out “It’s good that God sent Jesus so we could be part of making things better. If he had just left us in that other mess, that’d be bulls**t.

I kind of laughed when he said it. As a churchified person I was a little uncomfortable with how he put it. But I was also appreciative that God had just illuminated a deep truth about Himself in this young mans heart. I looked at him with a big grin… “I think that’s good, too. God’s no bullsh**ter. That’s why we call it Good News.”

By Adam McLane

Kristen and Adam live in the San Diego neighborhood of Rolando with their three children.

3 replies on “Why Christianity Works”

I’ve seen that explanation before, and I think it is a good one that really addresses the different problems that our generation sees in the world. The bridge diagram is SO 1970s. lol

Wow. I preached an extended version of this myself just a couple of weeks ago, using a whiteboard (yes, that’s right) and an illustration almost exactly like this.

In my experience, not many Christians get this big picture view of the gospel. It seems that lots of people believe that the main result of Jesus’ death and resurrection is that we get to go to heaven when we die, and that there’s not really much different about the here and now. This is tragic, because Jesus talked more about the Kingdom of God than anything else, and it was a here and now thing – as well as a future thing. He called us into being a part of ushering in the Kingdom here and now, both inwardly and outwardly.

I love what Dallas Willard said: “Christianity is not so much about getting us into heaven as it is getting heaven into us.”

I’m excited to hear about this being preached, and demonstrated, to teens, and that they are responding to it.

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