Why-I-Dont

Why I Don’t Reach Out to Teens Anymore

In Discipleship, Evangelism, Leadership, Missions by Kevin Patterson0 Comments

After sitting back the other day pondering the important things in youth ministry I reached an epiphany, I shouldn’t reach out to teens anymore! Why you might ask? Here are a few reasons:

1. It’s not my job.

I’m sure it was lost in the translation of the scripture from Greek to English but I’m sure Jesus actually meant “go and make disciples of thine own age.” You see I’m a 34 year old, my target evangelistic audience should be 30 something’s not teenagers! I mean really, I was hired by the church to be a pastor which means shepherd I wasn’t hired to share the Gospel!

2. Teens don’t need Jesus.

Teenagers today have so many things we didn’t have when they were a kid! They have cell phones, computers, (depending on how old you are: the internet), they have so many things to keep them busy outside of church and Jesus. They don’t need Jesus to show up and complicate their lives anymore than they already are.

3. Outreach doesn’t work anymore.

I don’t understand it! I do pizza party after pizza party and no one shows up except our own church kids and that one kid who smells funny, dresses badly, and using all that foul language. I don’t get it! Where are all the teens who dress nice and act like cast members of Duck Dynasty? Surely they must be out there and surely the smell of hot pizza will bring them in!

4. All teenagers are already Christian.

I minister in the Bible Belt, all the teens here already are Christian! All of them, when asked, will say “Yeah I’m Christian. My mom and dad take me to church every Sunday.” Surely all these kids must have Jesus already.

5. I’m way to busy.

Between my family, prepping a lesson for Wednesday night, and a Sunday School lesson on Sunday Morning; I just don’t have the time to share my faith with students. I mean I’m overwhelmed, I just don’t have the time.

Hopefully by now you’ve realized this is a sarcastic article. Hopefully when you read this you thought, “Wow this is the stupidest article I’ve ever read! This guy’s points are the lamest excuse I’ve ever read for not reaching teenagers with the Gospel,” I hope you did, because a lot of us make some pretty lame excuses for not reaching out to teens. The fact of the matter, though, is Christ commands us to reach the lost; regardless of age.

What are you doing to reach lost teenagers?

Teens today need Jesus more than ever. True Christianity simplifies things. If Jesus is truly the center of ones life things become simple because it becomes all about Him.

Sometimes these teens that truly need Jesus are the ones right in front of our face. The ones that we may not want in church because they smell like alcohol or they cuss way to much. These are precisely the people Jesus would have hung out with. Sometimes even though a teen claims to be Christian they might not have any idea what Christianity really is. They think that because mom and dad make them go to church that they are saved. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

To paraphrase Christ, “The road to heaven is narrow and sparsely traveled. The road to hell is wide and it’s so packed traffic is at a stand still.” My brothers and sisters when will we realize that we are often not as busy as we make out to be? Even if we are, even if every waking minute of our day is filled with something, we cannot overlook our obligation as Christians to reach out to a lot and dying world. It’s called the GREAT Commission, not the WHEN EVER YOU FEEL LIKE IT Commission. It was great enough that it is what Jesus left us with before ascending to heaven. When will we realize we are the ones who are responsible to reach out into a lost a dying world?


Header image provided through gratisography.com by Ryan McGuire.

Kevin Patterson is the full time Associate Pastor/Minister of Youth at Spring Bayou Baptist Church in Kevil, KY. He is a youth ministry veteran with 5+ years in the trenches. He has been everything from a volunteer, bi-vocational, and full time youth pastor. He writes a little and blogs at his own blog: Life in the Youth Ministry Fishbowl. Kevin is a US Army combat veteran, married with two awesomely awkward daughters, drummer, and is currently pursuing a degree in Christian Studies.