Thursday, April 19, 2012

SQUIRREL! The Case of Spiritual ADD

Like a dog and a squirrel or a Jr. high boy with...well pretty much anything. We as the church and as youth workers have all got a bad case of ADD/ADHD spiritually.  We get all wound up and excited about the newest cause or trend.  We all jump on the bandwagon and drag our groups along behind us.   It can be a tornado, a hurricane, or even a war lord in Uganda.  Yeah, remember that guy it has only been 3 weeks and not a peep around the church any more.

The church at large has this problem, as it quickly moves from thing to thing.  Youth ministry and especially sometime the JH/MS ministry side of things get so easily sucked in.  We work with students and get all upset because they won't stay on task, listen, or focus.  Well, how are we doing as the adult leaders?  I include myself, as I am trying to make myself more aware of this too.

It is time we slow down and focus our minds and hearts spiritually.  It may seem a bit boring in the midst of the hype we live in, but we need to start finding and sticking with a vision, plan and cause.   How about we just choice to P.A.C.E ourselves.  Let agree that we will give it our best shot to stop the cycle of Spiritual ADD.  Here are my thoughts and what I am working on myself about...

1.) Prayer.  This may seem the quick "Sunday School" answer, but it is the core of any change in life.  Before you make a change in your ministry or get involved in a cause/mission pray about it.  It will intentionally slow thing down, but will also give you a clearer vision of what you should do.

2.) Ask. Ask hard questions and research about the trend, cause, need and people involved.  If we have learned nothing from the KONY 2012 thing is to ask questions and research beyond the hype. Before you race off to be part of the 135 million plus people who all suddenly care because of a video, find out more information.

3.) Commit. If you are going to do something, do it only if you are willing to stick it out for a while.  Longevity it the golden ticket in this conversation.  It is actually less helpful in the long run to help when its the popular thing.  Anybody remember a little thing called "Hurricane Katrina" how about the "Earthquake in Chile".  Guess what people are still living in tents in Haiti!   Do what you can do and then keep on doing it day in and day out...year in and year out.

4.) Educate.  If you are already praying about something, asking hard questions & researching, and now you are committed to something for the long haul, it only make sense we do what we are called to do teach about it.  If it passes the first 3 steps then it is time we EDUCATE our students and our churches.  We need to now dig into God's Word and find about what passages apply.   Once again in our hype-driven world we chase after things without ever really taking the time to learn and understand.

These are just a couple thoughts as I learn to slow down my own spiritual mind and focus in on what is going on and not be distracted by...

Just kidding!! Feel free to add your thoughts, suggestions and reflections on this topic.