What is Youth Group all about?
What will we be discussing and exploring together this year?
At the end of the year, what do I want people to say they really learned this year?
Here it is: It’s all about Jesus Christ. (shocking, huh?)
It’s so easy for us Christians to shift our focus to thoughts about Jesus and about how to live for Jesus that we actually lose sight of Jesus Christ himself. Over the course of this year, I hope to emphasize again and again that our faith and hope is not believing certain things about Jesus, but in Jesus Christ himself. As a theology-nerd, I think it’s hopefully obvious that we really understand who Jesus is, what He did, and what He expects of us – but I’m concerned that sometime in our efforts to understand those things we take our focus off of Jesus and turn them onto thoughts about him.
As Oswald Chambers has written, “The abiding awareness of the Christian life is to be God himself, not just thoughts about him.” This has been a great encouragement and challenge to me personally ever since I read this as a college student.
I really want to encourage every student in our ministry to memorize the following passage, as we’ll return to it often throughout the year:
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Hebrews 12:1-2 (NIV)