I was teaching on Tuesday night at the Baptist Theological College about Youth & Culture.
I would have to say that at 42 years old I am somewhat out of touch with the current surface issues in youth culture, but as I prepared I felt what was most important was to look at the deeper cultural forces that actually give shape to the surface issues (TV shows, music, toys).
The bigger undergirding issues I chose to pick up on were:
1. Post-modernity – I know the whole pomo thing is very passe, but the relativity of truth is a huge issue for us as we seek to present Jesus as the only way and this is the current worldview of anyone in the youth scene today.
2. Consumerism lolita free – no big surprise here. The selfishness this engenders makes it hard to develop passionate followers of Jesus and when churches try to play to it, rather than confront it, we end up subverting discipleship completely.
3. Suburban living – the more I ponder this one the more I believe we are shaped by the values of the burbs – comfort, security, risk averse privatopia – and it is not a good thing.
We spent much of the evening discussing what impact these forces have on the way we do mission and church. It provoked some very healthy discussion and a rather quiet group managed to gain some steam after a while!
I’d be interested in what you would see as the prime forces shaping youth culture as. Would you add or subtract any?
If you want to see the notes you can click here.