Gosh, I really love the message of this video.
I want to encourage youth workers to watch this video twice. Watch it the first time with your adult glasses on. Get annoyed that there are fireworks shooting out of her chest or two boys kissing or even that a girl strips down and jumps in a pool.
Those are the things you are trained to see as an adult.
The second time, put on the glasses of a high school student. Remember what it was like to be one of the people portrayed in the video. Feeling out of sorts. Feeling unpopular. Feeling isolated from the world you wanted to be a part of.
Perhaps now you can see why this message is so powerful? (More than 500,000 views in 24 hours!) Perhaps, just perhaps, Katy Perry is preaching a message you’d also like to get across?
Maybe she’s a prophetess to a generation? (And doing it outside of being a part of the church? Gasp.)
Perhaps we need to learn that her use of art and symbolism to communicate to students is something we need to think about way more than just the spoken word? Perhaps we need to continue to foster ministries that embrace and empower students to express themselves and feel safe? Perhaps we need to celebrate when students break free of peer pressure that’s keeping them down or isolating them and dance with them as they embrace freedom? Maybe the message of this video could be a halfway point to talking about freedom in Christ?
When I see people in youth ministry looking down on the powerful messages the media is portraying, I get frustrated in the realization that the church continues to perpetrate the same old lie. “If it isn’t our message shared in our way, it must be bad.” (This is a closed theory, like I talked about here.)
And I wonder when we’ll embrace openness and acknowledge that our message is true, and can be open, expressed in ways we don’t have to approve of and still be truth?