Throughout this school year, the topic of worth has come up several times. It’s been woven through the majority of my lessons during Wednesday night youth group. Why are our youth struggling with this topic?
Honestly, why do we adults struggle with this topic? As Christians, we should know who dictates our worth, and where it comes from. Yet so many struggle to feel like they’re enough. We are inundated with worldly marketing. We’re constantly being told we’re missing the mark. We’re shown countless examples of people who have their life perfectly together; people who have talent and promise. We’re told these people are who we should aspire to be. Throw childhood trauma in the mix and all hope seems lost. Many of our youth are crushed in spirit when they walk through our church doors. We build them up and arm them with the truth, but for many, every day is a renewed battle. It’s made the truth of the gospel hard for several youth to even grasp. They struggle to wrap their head around the truth that they were fearfully and wonderfully made, in His image. When you tell them they’re valued and wanted, they laugh and wait for you to tell them the list of things they could be doing better, or they cry because no one has told them that before. Both are heartbreaking to see.
How do we as a church body combat this?
I think there are 5 things we can do to help in this battle:
1. We need to pray.
Philippians 4:6“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”
2. We need to persevere.
Hebrews 10:24-25 “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
3. We need to lead by example.
Hebrews 13:7“Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith.”
4. We need to affirm.
Timothy 4:12“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”
5. We need to show up.
Philippians 2:1-4 “Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from His love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”