If I could have banned a word last year it would have been the word: awkward. From sit-coms to general conversation, the word just creeped in to describe anything uncomfortable to talk about. Although I don’t like the over use of the word it completely describes my youth ministry and just about every other youth ministry in America. But awkwardness can be the catalyst for learning.

Consider this, we are trying to build a community and a church and the church, out of awkwardness. We have kids with no filters from brain to mouth, kid who are shy, kids who figuring out who they are. I struggle on a weekly basis to connect jocks with nerds, cheerleaders with anime chicks, and I wonder why the group doesn’t grow or achieve certain goals.

Every youth meeting is fueled with awkwardness. From trying to get kids involved in games to getting up and sharing a testimony or announcements. We are flying in the face of adolescent angst. So, what do we do? Nothing. There is nothing we can do. I’m not sure we need to.

The disciples, I’m sure, could recall some awkward moments:

  • Peter sinking right in front of Jesus
  • James and John’s mother requesting special favors for her kids
  • Jesus talking with women
  • Jesus arguing with Pharisees
  • Jesus healing lepers
  • Judas running out on the last supper
  • The woman challenging Jesus about dogs getting crumbs of bread

The list goes on. Jesus was a master of creating awkward situations. Jesus did not avoid them, he embraced them. Maybe, instead of trying to avoid awkwardness or abolish it , we should capitalize on it. It is the awkward moments that create teachable moments.

You know what is really awkward? Trying to explain all this in a staff meeting.

For your pleasure: awkward family pictures

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