Practices for Speaking Into Millennial Life
Faith seeking understanding. St. Anselm has given voice to a new generation of people and their way of engaging a deep and passionate trust in the Triune God. The spiritual journey of many millennials is described in various ways including the sacredness of questioning everything, engaging doubt, evolving faith, or authentic, honest conversations.
Recently Sarah Bessy’s book, Out of Sorts, has given voice to describing this spiritual journey of millennials. And the ongoing process of spiritual shifts she talks about are much like the yearnings of millennials outside the institutional church. But they see all the posters in the media of the cool church and can’t help but think that they are more isolated and disconnected from a deep and passionate faith.
So if churches are going to reach millennials who are intrigued by a faith seeking understanding then we’ll need to practice some new things in order to speak into millennial life.
We can’t just be “in church” as leaders. We need to reimagine ourselves as not merely a pastor of a church but as a pastor to a community. Thus we need to be present in our communities in order to lead our congregation to do the same. This will bring us into relationship with millennial who are engaged in their community.
We need to practice walking alongside people for seasons of life not merely program periods. This will mean we won’t be as productive because we can’t merely funnel all people into one program and give them a shot of Jesus. Instead we have to patiently walk with people so that we can begin to really know them and discern how God is active in their life.
Far too often we operate out of a kind of social and theological shorthand. It saves us a ton of time to categorize and classify people based on a handful of conversations we might have with them. But if we are going to hear the doubt, the deep questions, and the honest engagement millennials are having with faith, we’ll have to take much more time to listen to them.
And not only to individuals but also the culture they are immersed in. That means stepping into a posture of learningand it may even require that you seek out a millennial who can be your sherpa into their culture. Giving you books, music, movies, and memes that help you begin to understand them.
What are some practices that you see as essential in reaching millennial?
[Photo credit captain_die]