I decided to turn this into a little series. For those of you interested, the first post of this series is here.
Here are notes from the Forum on the 2nd breakout topic - Mobilizing Our Youth for Missions.
I thought I would offer some reflections from those notes.
"Greatest barriers for Mobilizing Youth"
Leaders without vision and skills to make it happen.
Totally true. The only way we get a vision for something like this is to get a perspective outside of our own experience. It's almost a catch 22, unless someone has gone, we don't see it. In my case, it took the Perspectives class to catalyze some of my previous mission experiences.
Not enough leaders have had missions experiences.
I would also add that not enough leaders have had missions experiences that have been more than just glorified vacations. If a trip to another country didn't bring about a change in what we care about, no wonder the experience isn't worth replicating to the next generation.
Not enough mobilizers.
Yes. True. It's harder to find mobilizers than people that will go.
Nominal Christians in the US.
Yes to this even more. In the US, it's okay for a person to call themselves a 'Christian' and yet have nothing to do with Jesus. It's perfectly fine for us to say we follow Christ and yet live like a pagan. And we wonder why the unbelieving world has all the disdain it has towards Christians.
Missions equals event for most Youth Ministries.
Scathing. This is one of the reasons why one of my favorite authors like to say that he doesn't believe in missions, but he believes in mission. (Name that author and I'll interview you on this blog for free! Hey - at least its a tiny bit of publicity...)
Great Commission doesn't fit into most Youth Ministries vision.