Raising Teens into Church Life pt. 2: Serving Others

Church is a blessing. The church, a local group of redeemed sinners worshipping God through loving Him and loving others, is a blessing to those who participate in it. The center of the church’s worship is Sunday morning; through prayer, singing, giving, and responding to God’s Word in faith the church collectively blesses God and others. Our consideration is how to help our young adults and teens see and experience these benefits of the church body. We first considered participation on Sunday morning, now we take a practical turn as we look at serving others.

It is no mystery we fight against self-centeredness. We may enter work, family, free-time, and church gatherings with the attitude of “what will I get out of this?” God calls each Christian to live an others-first lifestyle in worshipful response to the others-first humility Jesus exemplified on the cross as He rescued us from sin and death unto Himself. A church that serves each other builds unity in its members and allures others into its membership. Service validates gospel truth. Teens who serve grow sure of Christ’s love for them and their need to respond in kind. Here are three passages that help us see the blessing in serving others:

1 John 5:1 says the hallmark of the Christian is the love for other Christians, “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one born of Him.” Parents, look for and nurture the love for others in your children by providing opportunities to serve. Church, let’s show our younger generations what a love for others driven by a love for God looks like. Teens and young adults, this command isn’t an American ideal, but it is God’s ideal, repent of your selfishness and pray for faith to love the church as He loves you.

James 2:15-17 gives specificity to what an others-first love looks like, “If a brother or sister is without clothes and lacks daily food and one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace, stay warm, and be well fed,’ but you don’t give them what the body needs, what good is it? In the same way faith, if it doesn’t have works, is dead by itself.” Love for others must be practical. Parents, practically love others. Church, practically love others. Teens and young adults, practically serve others. 

Galatians 6:9-10 says that these good works point others toward eternal life, “Let us not get tired of doing good, for we will reap at the proper time if we don’t give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us work for the good of all, especially for those who belong to the household of faith.” The goal of practically serving others is their spiritual worship of God would increase. Parents, is your goal in your parenting your children’s initial and growing knowledge and worship of God? Church, let’s lovingly encourage our younger generations to serve in the ministries of Green Pond. Young adults and teens, discuss the things that keep you back from serving in the church with a parent or trusted church member.

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