Seen any good commercials lately? Any stick with you? I bet the the ones that did told the best story. One commercial I saw was for Pizza Hut and strangely I cannot find the video anywhere. The commercial has real Pizza Hut employees doing the commercials and the theme is Your Favorites Your Pizza Hut. Some of the themes they use are
This is not just a pizza this is
- your kids favorite Friday night meal
- your ball teams favorite way to celebrate
Pizza tells a story and so does your youth ministry, but is it worth telling? Here are three bad stories youth groups tell,
- We’re right and everyone else is wrong story
This story is an old story. I understand we follow a narrow path but that does not mean we have to narrow our story so only a few can investigate it. If Jesus is for everyone, broaden your story so anyone can hear it, understand it, and receive it.
- We have to have a bigger and better story
This is a selfish story. This makes the gospel a story about us and our group. The story is about Jesus and becoming more like Him for those who believe. For those in our ministry who do not believe, God’s story is about redemption. When we focus on us, we rob the True Story of any real power
- We’re a scary story
Is Jesus coming back? Yes. Is the world crumbling around us? Sure looks like it. Is Hell hot? That’s what Book tells me. But is this the story we want to tell with out the redemptive nature of Christ. Too often we use the horror story of hell and the second coming as a way to manipulating students to greater commitment or to come to an altar.
If this is the whole story, we’re all in trouble. I believe in telling the truth in context and not as a stand alone truth. Truth in context is a always a deeper, richer story. A solo truth, out of context, is a shallow, short story and will only motivate so far and challenge students to only go so deep.
What story is your group telling? Try writing your groups story, start with Once Upon Time There Was This Youth Group... and see where the story leads you from there.