As the body of Christ, we affirm the Bible as bedrock to our faith and the plum line for our interaction with this world. As we’ve said before, young adults are looking for truth. However, many of them don’t know where to find it or what it looks like. We must never lose sight of what we can offer this generation—the truth that is found in the Word of God. Biblical depth becomes a non-negotiable in ministry.
Consider the boy band craze that swept the nation in the late 80s and into the 90s. Overnight it seemed, boy bands were selling millions of albums. Everyone from 14 to 40 was caught up in the hysteria of the moment—they just couldn’t get enough of their catchy tunes, styled hair and choreographed dance moves. But then it all ended.
Just as quickly as these groups appeared on the scene as the beloved future of music, their crowds dwindled. But not only did they dwindle, some of them even radically turned in allegiance. The valuable lesson we can take from the boy band phenomenon is that our culture is a hub for fleeting fame. Most people, despite their level of popularity, will eventually be forgotten. If not forgotten completely, they will certainly lose the level of fame that they once had.
Now that we’ve discussed people, let’s think for a moment about products. Are you someone who goes out shopping every year on black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving? I traditionally am not. If I do muster up the courage to get out amongst the chaos, I certainly don’t go looking to shop. Really, I’m just going out to hear Christmas music, people watch, and keep my wife company. I tried going out this past year, but it was a mistake. I was “grinched” by a fellow shopper as he cut me off in the parking lot.
People begin lining up outside stores and shopping malls hours before opening time with hopes of saving a few bucks. They’re also potentially trying to get their hands on a hot, new product that apparently everyone else wants as well. Each year there is that “it” product. You know the one I’m talking about. The one people fight for and stores can’t manage to keep in stock.
But, here’s the reality of it all. Most of these products have limited shelf lives. They will soon become outdated or possibly even obsolete. A newer model, a cooler design, or some other factor will eventually rend the old product insignificant in the eyes of most. One year it’s in ultrahigh demand. The next year it may not be. And then the following year, it may out of stock indefinitely.
The point is that personalities and products come and go. Both have fleeting fame. And this is actually great news for us. How can this be beneficial to your ministry? How does this relate to depth? We live amongst a generation of people, especially younger adults, who are desperately searching for something that lasts. And quite simply, this world has nothing to offer them. But, God does. And, in turn, so do we. We have truth.
Scripture tells us, “The grass withers and the flower fades, but the Word of the Lord remains forever” (1 Peter 1:24). Our God and His Word are never changing and yet constantly relevant. This should have massive implications on our approach to ministry. Otherwise, how could we ever maintain relevance in this day and age? So many times we commit countless hours to understanding pop-culture or programming our services to meet the social climate of the day. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but let’s remind ourselves of an important truth: Our ability to retrofit God and His Word into today’s cultural context will not bring revival upon this land. The only hope we have is that God not only understands today’s culture and this generation, but He created it and knows every facet of its intricacy.