Young adults (college students, singles, and young married couples) are a reservoir of leadership and service that the church is failing to tap into. Often, we are tempted to run from this age group thinking that surely they are not yet qualified to lead and certainly are not capable of doing anything more than tearing down tables, but the secular world apparently sees it very differently.
The United States military is not a mediocre organization. It is powerful force of men and women who protect the rights and freedoms of U.S. citizens. They leave their loved ones, travel around the world to do a daunting task. We trust the soldiers to run into battle and win the victory but we don’t trust them to teach a Sunday school class. Let’s take Apple Inc. as an example. A quick search of their website will reveal numerous job positions for college students and college graduates. And I’m not talking about answering phones. They offer college students the ability to work in their stores to present their company and sell their products. College graduates have the chance to enter their “Apple Store Leader Program” to be trained to lead an Apple store. These people are responsible for millions of dollars worth of merchandise, but they are what we would consider “young adults”. Apple trusts them with millions of dollars of products, but we get nervous when they want to lead a Bible study.
Here is what I’m finding. The military and Apple trust young adults to do incredible things, because they trained them the right way. They know that these people are capable of doing amazing things because the organization helped them develop the skills they need. The church gets nervous, because we have failed to train them. We have failed to disciple them to help them discover and develop their spiritual gifts.
Sadly, young adults can find more trust and opportunities to do great things through a secular organization than they can through the church. It’s not their fault, it’ ours.
About David: David is a young man who serves as the college and media leader at Union Grove Baptist Church. He is engaged to be married in the summer of 2013 to Tonia. God has given David a desire to reach college students and young adults with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and see their lives radically change because of the impact the Gospel has on them. The two age groups are neglected in most churches, but need to be reached.