Are We Having Fun Yet?
“What do you do for fun?” That’s one of my favorite “get to know you” questions when talking to a teenager that I don’t know very well. That open-ended question is much better than, “So, what school do you go to?” or “What grade are you in?” or even, “What classes are you taking?” If I can get a kid to start talking about what he or she enjoys doing, the chances are high that we’ll have a decent conversation. We might be able to move from talking about hobbies to more revealing subjects.
If you were to ask me that question, I’d have two answers: guitars and airplanes. (You can tell what I’m interested in from the magazines that I have in, umm, my, uh, throne room.) I’ve been a musician most of my life, and have played guitar in church worship bands for decades. I can talk your ear off about guitars, amps, speakers, pickups, effects, and recordings. Then several years ago I became a pilot – the culmination of a lifelong dream to fly. I can regale you with tales of “interesting” landings, of close encounters with World War II fighters and bombers, and excursions to interesting locations.
I’m sure you have your own answer to the “What do you do for fun?” question.
There’s a huge difference, though, between talking about what I do for fun and talking about my passion. I really do enjoy talking about guitars and flying, but there are two issues that I am passionate about: my family and youth ministry. Get me going on one or the other and you’ll sense the difference between a hobby and a calling.
Youth ministry should be a passion – or else it’s just a job or a hobby.
That’s why I love working with rookie youth pastors, volunteer youth leaders, and churches who want to do better in their ministry with teenagers!