Being around other churches, youth pastors all week has been a good thing for our group and me. We get used to our own culture, or way of doing things, and we forget that there are other ways people conduct themselves. What i find funny is this carries over to the church all the time.
People assume that their way of doing things is the 'right way'. We have such a "Me-ism" attitude towards our personal likes for church. How the music should be, teaching, chairs, snacks, layout of a building, how the janitor places the toilet paper. We get so US focused sometimes. When a group of people who share a similar US feel get together they feel they become a 'voice for everyone else'.
How in Western America thought we do this to the scriptures. We neglect to really look at setting, context, original sociological settings that add a huge impact on the words we read. N.T Wright (British Theologian- read what he writes, great stuff) has a saying "We need to read with 1st Century eyes & ask 21st Century questions". We need to see the original message & see how it applies to us today.
As we (our youth staff) is changing the culture or way of doing things, in the student ministry what we are really doing is just redirecting peoples mind sets. We know their will be personal opinions & differences, even from me, but at the end of the day we need to decide what is best for the students for them to grow closer to Jesus & to be used to enjoy and expand the kingdom.
It is also true for my own life & family. What we do is for the best of everyone to grow closer to Jesus & to be used to enjoy and expand the kingdom. The excitement is that we are all in it together!