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My Space, Subculture and the divide

Do you ever sit back and wonder... Why aren't we (large we) relevant in the setting of the local church?

To get your answer take a look at any "My Space" done by a person 16-25. I have a habit of checking AIM profiles for students in our ministry as well as students who are now in college. Today I stumbled on yet another "My Space". This program is pretty standard for which ever teen or young adult you visit. It has a catchy picture (usually seductive or showing as vulgar of an act as possible in hopes of getting a reaction), a catchy name (see quote above), and basic info. The basic info covers the traditional who and what's but then it gets out there. You see, the point of 'My Space' is for people to think you're cool (although many of the profiles will go out of their way to say 'I don't care if you think I'm cool' -- which is itself a cry for coolness) so you will find similar things like... What bands I like, the crazy party I went to where got wasted, the hot guy/girls out there and ohh yes the infamous "friends". You see, "My Space" offers a place where you can add other "My Space" friends. The more friends you have on your list, the cooler you are so at minimum you will see at least 50 "friends". Don't bother asking the definition of a friend b/c to most adults we wouldn't classify these people as acquaintances let alone friends... Basically if you've visited their site you call them "friend".

Where am I going? Here.
The church is answering questions at an intellectual (okay, some are) level and at a spiritual level. The world is networking at a flesh level. Nearly all of our passions are found at the flesh level. (I think the bible is good for some props here wouldn't ya say?) Anyway... We many times fail to be genuine on these areas. We spend so much time trying to cover up and ignore the passionate places of our DNA. The church is not a place where a person can figure out how to harness a person's passions or focus them on different things. The church shuns those parts of our being and says "say two hail mary's and call us next Sunday".

Our generation of leaders must rise to the task. We must not get comfy with our Bapticostal meeting rooms and our bloglines of other Pastors. [Brian Bailey had similar thoughts the other day but maybe it just took a few days for me to get ticked off enough about it.]

1. We have to get in contact with the "My Space" crowd and see what questions they are asking by their everyday actions.
2. Another thing... We have got to quit pacifying adults. Older adults usually don't have a clue as to what real life is like for a person in college or High School. Parents want to ignore it b/c they want to think they've done a great job up until now. Any defects they see in their child becomes a defect they see in themselves. We wouldn't want to know the "truth" would we? How about we get over ourselves enough to understand we may have kids who are in a battle with sin daily and get on the front lines with them feeding them ammo. Instead they're in the battle and we have tea while eating krimpets at the church discussing whom should be accountable to whom.

Now yes I hear you thinking " Well, this sounds like a college ministry or high school ministry problem." No. It's not. It's a future generation problem. (The very divisions we create are ignored in pop society--exibit A, my space) Where do you think those people who are experiencing High School and college today will be in 10 years when you finally care about their demographic?

Okay. I'm done. Much of this was an open thought with myself. I need to apply nearly all of it. I'd love to hear other thoughts. Where is the church falling short and where are some great examples of people making it happen?

posted by Tally Wilgis @ Wednesday, February 16, 2005

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