Monday, September 19, 2011


I'm really praying that we are trying to invite a generation understand, own, and live out a life-changing faith in Jesus.  To that end, I don't see our high school ministry as a place of protection from the evil world, but rather a place of equipping for students who want to engage their faith in the real world.   This means if you're a "bunker parent" who believes that we should keep our students safe in church from the evil influences, then we will be at odds in philosophy.  I don't try and drag the evil from outside in, but I also don't talk to my students about Jesus without addressing as much of what they'll hear elsewhere as I can.

In this current weekend series, we've been asking students each weekend to ask their honest questions.  We've asked them to share with us what they've been wondering and we are addressing them little by little each weekend.  This coming weekend, we are actually spending the whole teaching time on them.  

Before I give you the list my students have turned in so far... here's a few things to remember:
  • These came from the church setting, not the mall hall.  So if they shock you, know it's not the ones "out there" who are confused.  It's those who came inside the church walls too.
  • If you don't know the answer, don't fake one.  Acting confident about a really tough question only hides the reality that many of these questions have been wrestled with for centuries.  We don't have all of them answered today.  Tomorrow is not looking that good either.  Join them in the faith journey instead of pretending to be an expert guide.  
  • Every question comes with a story.  Never answer a question assuming you know the motivation of the one asking the question.  Even if the answer is simple or clear, the issue that caused the question may not be.
  • "It's a Mystery"is the "Because I said so" of theology. It doesn't answer anything or give anyone any confidence you are thinking either.  Don't dismiss a good question with a cliche answer.  Yes, some things are mysterious... but work your way to that conclusion, don't lead with it. 
  • We must create an ethos that welcomes questions and the doubt they often reflect.  Choosing to not do this doesn't erase doubt or build confidence, it just reinforces pretending and ignorance.  
That said... here's some stuff my students are wondering- in no particular order. What about yours? 
  • Why is life so hard?
  • In our time now, many other religious people date other types of religious people. But say it’s okay…but what about agnostic/atheist people?  Is it okay to date them?  Or is it completely against the Bible even if they have good morals?
  • Why do we pray to a God we can’t see?
  • Is it wrong to defend homosexuality?  
  • How am I supposed to think about divorce?
  • Why do bad things happen to good people?
  • There is a really nice guy who asked me to start dating him.  He’s not Christian though and is averse to starting a relationship with God.  I’m thinking about saying yes…what do you think?
  • Why does being yourself make you an outcast?
  • Where did the concept of haloes on angels come from?  That’s not in the Bible.
  • If you commit suicide is it true you won’t go to heaven?
  • Why is it that teens and adults these days when put into a leadership role, don’t live as a good godly example to others?
  • Is there life on other planets?  Did God only make the earth?
  • What’s going to happen when the world ends?
  • Who do so many bad people seen to be doing so well?
  • No matter what, God still loves us…right?
  • Why does God stay in heaven…does he stay in heaven because He’s afraid of what He made down here?
  • Why do some people believe that when you are baptized as an infant that you were saved?  Where did that idea come from?  Because the Bible says in Romans 10:9 that you have to confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord; and when you are a baby you can’t do that; so how would being baptized as an infant make you saved?
  • Why does it so consistently seem like God is not there?  I’m trying hard to find Him but it doesn’t seem like He is there.
  • Is Islam evil?
  • Do you still know who your friends and family are when you get to heaven, or does everybody have a mutual feeling for everyone?  Would you love someone you met once on earth the same as you love your family?  Is there a difference?
  • If we ask God to come back as human, would He?  Will He ever tell me my purpose?  Will I find out?  In Genesis, God made people then Adam and Eve, why do we think Adam and Eve are the first humans made?  Do I call myself a follower or a Christian?
  • Since Jesus was a Jew when Jesus comes down like Christians will they go to heaven?
  • How do I know if God is listening when I pray? Why do we sometimes rush with God? Why can’t we hear God? Why can’t we see God?
  • Why did God take away my daddy?  Why cancer?
  • I was wondering if you had doubt would you want to achieve what you doubted?
  • Is any prayer a good prayer?
  • Do kids in like Africa or some place where people don’t know about God go to Hell?  Even if they’ve never heard of him before?
  • What does the term “God-fearing” mean?  God doesn’t seem scary, like he should be feared? 
  • If God is so perfect, why does he get pissed off?  Why did he send a flood that wiped out almost everyone, etc?
  • Psalm 115:3- “our God is in heaven, he does whatever pleases him.”  If he does what pleases him, why is there sadness and disaster.  Isn’t our God good? 
  • What is holiness?  How can I be holy? 
  • Since God created everything and everyone… can he speak to us through secular ideas, art, music, etc?  
  • Is it normal to have ungodly desires?  



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San Diego, CA
Husband. Dad. Jesus Follower. Friend. Learner. Athlete. Soccer coach. Reader. Builder. Dreamer. Pastor. Communicator. Knucklehead.

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