Learning To Love: Thoughts On Faith Formation In Young People

aaron-burden-149692

One of the questions that seems most prevalent in youth ministry circles–outside of “how many students are in your youth group”–is how do you know if a teenager is growing in their faith?

It seems most of us long for some definable or measurable way to record faith formation. And I wonder if this quest, though often rightly motivated and sincere, is missing an invaluable piece of the puzzle.

Because maybe measuring faith isn’t something that is so easy to detect…at least not in the way we want to measure it.

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On Guns

Used with permission: https://pixabay.com/en/cartridges-weapon-war-hand-gun-2166491/

Used with permission: https://pixabay.com/en/cartridges-weapon-war-hand-gun-2166491/

We were in Paris when we heard about the Vegas shooting last month. We’d just stopped in at a cafe for a coffee, and I checked Twitter. The hashtag “Vegas shooting” was trending. So I clicked.

What followed was shock, outrage, and heartbreak over the details of the event.

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Want To Find God? Ditch Your Ego

Used with permission. All rights: https://deathtothestockphoto.com/

Used with permission. All rights: https://deathtothestockphoto.com/

What is it that keeps us from knowing and experiencing God in our daily lives? There are a number of reasons and excuses we can come up with to answer the question, but I wonder if there is a simpler explanation.

How often do we miss out on experiencing God simply because our focus is on ourselves? What if we ditched our ego, and found the result was an encounter with the divine?

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Experience Is > Google

sergey-zolkin-192937

We live in a world of information overload. We’ve all felt it, too.

Google this. Ask Siri about that. Find the answer to any and everything you’re looking for. And we love it, don’t we? I don’t know how I drove anywhere before GPS or watched a movie without the help of IMBD.

But I often wonder if we’ve mistakenly replaced an experience with access to information. And maybe what’s at stake is not our performance or ease of access or convenience, but the condition of our souls.

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