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Hillcrest Church Office
May 27, 2004
LeaderLines is a weekly “e-briefing” providing valuable information and inspiration to those who serve at Hillcrest Baptist Church.
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Here is this week's
A Word from Our Youth Minister, Jim Siegel
by Tom Goodman
For the next few editions of LeaderLines, I’ve asked my associates on the Ministry Staff to share their vision for their particular ministry areas. Since we just completed a great “Youth Sunday” last week, I thought it best to
have Jim Siegel start the series. I’ve really appreciated Jim’s contribution to Hillcrest. He has an unsinkable optimism, great respect for his fellow workers in the student ministry, and a laser-like clarity for what a student
ministry needs to accomplish.
– Pastor Tom
P.S. Have you checked out the “Frequently Asked Questions” page on our website? I hope the page will answer your questions regarding our proposed Fall schedule change. Go online at www.HillcrestAustin.org/ScheduleProposalFAQ.
Now, here’s Jim—
“Youth Ministry: A Different World”
by Jim Siegel
I appreciate the opportunity to write this week’s edition of LeaderLines. I believe it is vital to the growth of any ministry that all of its leaders “be on the same page.”
A Different World
In two separate settings, I have taken the time to share my student ministry philosophy, or why I do what I do the way I do it. In 1987, Bill Cosby introduced a new show called, “A Different World.” Instead of the “normal” Cosby shows focusing on his own family, this show portrayed his kids as growing adults in a world that was much different than the one he grew up in.
A Different Vocabulary
If you walk through the mall, turn on a teen TV show, or listen to a popular CD, you will soon find that the vocabulary of this generation is extremely different. The use of slang, and unfortunately profanity, has just about taken over what we recognize as conversational English.
Further, the use of church jargon is lost on this generation. Church jargon? You know what I mean. While it is doctrinally sound to teach that the only begotten virgin born Christ, who is, was, and ever shall be God incarnate, suffered a vicarious atoning death on the cross that served as the propitiation for our sin debt to a Holy God thereby providing justification and initiating the process of sanctification, the words and terms are lost on what many are calling a second post-Christian generation.
That is why you will hear me use terms such as “pre-believer” instead of words like “lost,” or “unsaved,” which tend to have a negative connotation. I also ask students to “cross a line of faith asking Jesus to become the Forgiver and Leader of their lives.” Students understand forgiveness and leadership, where the terms “Savior” and “Lord” are somewhat ambiguous. Please notice however, the gospel has not been changed or softened, merely made understandable to a generation that has not had much, if any, biblical instruction.
A Different Music Style
Two weeks ago while at Saddleback, Rick Warren said, “it is easier to change doctrine than your music style.” How sad but true! When it comes to music remember this, “Music is a medium through which the author is trying to communicate a message. Therefore, the message makes the music good or bad, not the music itself.” I’m sure somebody famous has said something similar, but for us simple folks, you can just quote me. In student ministry, we use the latest styles of music to reach students where they are. Jerry Falwell and Billy Graham agree that, “music is the language of this generation and if we don’t speak their language, we will lose this generation.”
A Different Approach to Ministry
Finally, I believe that my calling was to student ministry, not student baby-sitting. That is why I intentionally raise up students, encourage and train them, and then release them to do the work of the ministry. I believe our students, like the 11 students who have been credited with the great Welsh Revival, have the potential to change our world for Christ. Please join me in this effort as we continue to reach students for Jesus and get them up the H.I.L.L. My goal is to make it, “the climb of their lives.”
– Pastor Jim