Couple things I’d like to highlight this week: 1) This Saturday please consider helping with Melissa Jessberger’s project and 2) If you have any ideas for the New Year’s Eve Party/All-Nighter, please let me know.
Teaching Review — Student requested: Gospel Perspectives on the World and Issues of Today
The discussion was awesome last night! I really enjoyed it and I hope the students did too. We looked at how to approach tough issues of the world. I used what I called a Gospel Grid as a lense that we should look through when evaluating things of the world. Here is a quick summary:
- Clearly some things are good in the world and some things are not. Take art for example. Some art is very good and some art is bad. But how do we evaluate and determine what is good and what is bad and then how should we approach it and those around us?
- First, we should avoid the two extremes. One extreme says we should reject everything of the world. The other extreme says we should blindly accept everything of the world.
- Instead we should apply a Gospel Grid to everything.
- The historical perspective of the Gospel is 4 C’s:
- Creation – Everything God made is good (Gen. 1:31 and 1 Tim. 4:4).
- Corruption – But mankind sinned and everything is now corrupted (Gen. 3, Ecc. 7:29 and Jer. 12:4).
- Cross – God made a way through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus to save us from sin (John 3:16).
- Consummation – We look forward in hope to the day when God will complete his work and fully remove all the effects of sin (Romans 8:19-25).
- We can take the historical perspective of the Gospel and make a grid for evaluating everything. Here it is now four R’s. I’ll use a simple one related to the northern Virginia work-ethic culture. We should neither reject or blindly receive our local culture. So how should we evaluate it?
- Creation > Receive – What is good and reflective of God and his truth in the issue at hand that we can receive? Northern Virginia has a strong work ethic in our culture. Working hard and striving to be excellent is a good thing. God worked and he has designed us to work. As Christians we can affirm this aspect of our culture.
- Corruption > Reject – What is not good or sinful with the issue at hand that I should reject? Often that strong work ethic becomes the primary driving force in people’s lives to the point where they make sacrifices in their relationships. Additionally, God gave us an example of rest and often people in our culture are not getting enough rest. We should reject the aspects of our work culture that are bad.
- Cross > Redeem – What can I do as a Christian to redeem the issue at hand, to make it better? Lots of ideas come to mind but one thing that teenagers could do is look for opportunities to help people rest and invest in important relationships. Maybe offer yourself for free as a babysitter to allow a date night for a busy mom and dad?
- Consummation > Remember – We need to remember that ultimately things won’t be fully fixed until Christ returns and we should have hope because of that truth. Maybe the northern Virginia go-go-go culture discourages you? Do what you can to help redeem it but remember that you can’t ultimately fix it. Instead of being discouraged, have hope that one day Jesus will return and fix it.
- Finally, in your evaluations of issues and people through the Gospel Grid, don’t forget to take a very humble approach. In order to know what you can receive and reject and how to redeem it takes study of both God’s word and the issue at hand. Don’t just jump to conclusions, study both sides and then humbly apply God’s truth to the issue at hand.
Next Week — No Youth Group, Thanksgiving
If you come to the building anyway, I’ll be thankful that you love youth group so much that you forgot. Happy Thanksgiving!
Melissa Jessberger is doing a great service project for elderly people with alzheimer’s and dementia. She is leading an effort to make them quilts. She had a huge turnout last week! But there is more work to do this Saturday. Can you help? You can work in the morning or afternoon. RSVP on The City or directly to her.
Nov 22 – Service Project: Quilt making second day
Nov 26 – No youth group, Thanksgiving
Dec 3 – First Wednesday, game night!
Dec 10 – Youth Group, Topic: Vanity
Dec 17 – Youth Group, Christmas Party
Dec 24 – No youth group, Christmas
Dec 31 – Youth Group, Regular youth group followed by all nighter.
Jan 30-Feb 1 – Senior High DNow
Feb 13-15 – Middle School DNow