Through my 20+ years of ministry, I’ve come to deeply appreciate the immense potential and incredible responsibility youth leaders like you hold in your hands. The ability to influence young peoples’ relationship with God and impact their understanding of His desire to advance His kingdom in and through them is a high calling. Your imprint on your students’ spirituality can last a lifetime.
But we’re all familiar with the dismal stats that show the dramatic evacuation of young people from our churches post high school graduation. Granted, there are a variety of factors that appear to be contributing to this dire trend, but I believe, and research supports my theory, that there’s one particularly key reason why young people disengage from the church after they graduate from high school. And here it is: because they have never truly grasped that Jesus intended the church to be a movement of God’s people on mission for Him—knowing Him, making Him known and multiplying disciples for His Kingdom’s advancement.
Sadly, for many of our students, church is viewed as just one more social event that they’re free to opt in or out of on a whim.
Charting the Course for Kingdom Impact
So as a leader of youth who wants to take seriously your God-given calling to shepherd your students, what can you do to change this?
Here it is in a nutshell: equip and unleash your students for the God-sized mission He’s called them to of making disciples who make disciples. Set the course and nurture a youth group environment that is gospel advancing, evangelism-focused and disciple-multiplying. And model it for them in your own life.
If you want your students to develop and maintain a deep, thriving faith, it’s critical that they grasp the missional nature of their walk with Christ.
Committing to THE Cause
That’s why the driving end goal of Dare 2 Share’s Cause Circle evangelism strategy is not simply conversion, but multiplication. Note the repetitive, cyclical nature of the arrows in the Circle. They go on and on, just like Jesus intended the multiplying process of making disciples who make disciples to go on and on.
The “C” section of the “ABC” notation in the Circle is designed to capture this principle. The C stands for “Commit to THE Cause.”
Teens who Accept Christ and Belong to a church should also be challenged to Commit to THE Cause of making disciples who make disciples. As their coach, it’s your job to challenge and equip your students to live and give the gospel in word and deed and multiply.
The Power of Multiplication
The power of multiplication is one of the critical keys to growing a gospel advancing youth ministry. Take a fresh look at the power of multiplication diagramed out in the chart here. Start with just one believer on Day 1 who made just one new disciple every day. Then if each new disciple also, in turn, made a new disciple every day, in just 50 days everyone on Earth would be reached with the message of the gospel!
But it starts with one. One life at a time, transformed forever and on fire for advancing the kingdom of God. One student at a time in your youth group sharing their faith with their friends.
Unleashing New Believers
New believers are usually brimming with excitement about their newfound relationship with Jesus. What better time to tap into their natural desire to share with everyone around them the amazing news that God longs to be in a relationship with every single person on the planet? Your youth group should be a safe place for them to find the help and encouragement they need as they begin to share their new faith with their friends.
Committing to THE Cause of Christ to reach the lost and make disciples isn’t something that should wait until their walk with God is polished and perfected. It should start just as soon as someone understands the message of the gospel! Of course they’ll need coaching, prayer, encouragement and help finding answers to any questions that arise out of their conversations with others. But the very process of stepping out and sharing their faith will accelerate their discipleship growth because it make them eager to learn more about Jesus.
Dare 2 Share is here to help you do all those things. That’s why we provide you with loads of free training and tools—to help you build a gospel advancing ministry!
Let’s help our teenagers spread Jesus’ message of hope and grace like wildfire through their circles of influence, schools, community and beyond. Wouldn’t it be incredible if God chose to use this generation to reach the world for Christ!?!