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youth worker, youth ministry, teaching, spiritual growth, student growth, student ministry

Teaching Spiritual Maturity

By Doug Franklin October 1, 2009

That’s easy! Read your Bible every day, have a quiet time, and go to youth group. Wrong. Actually, those are just results of spiritual maturity, yet often we teach students that these actions equal spiritual maturity. The reason we do this is because we can’t explain how the Spirit works. It’s never the same for two people; it can’t be explained in a flashy 5 step process. This is the mystery of Christ! This Spirit works individually because God is personal. When we teach students that spiritual maturity equals righteous actions, like having a quiet time every day etc…, we create a generation full of guilt, for they are unable to fulfill the requirements we lay upon them. How about instead of piling on the guilt, we mentor students in developing a relationship with Christ. Let’s focus on teaching them that they can pray all the time, where ever they are. Let’s encourage students to seek protection in grace and confession.  Let’s celebrate when they learn about God through Scripture on their own. Let’s challenge them to be the first to forgive in a conflict. Let’s get in it with them, rolling around in the mess of their lives, helping them look more like Jesus every day.

P.S. I know a lot of you are doing this already– way to go!

About the Author

Doug Franklin

Doug Franklin is the president of LeaderTreks, an innovative leadership development organization focusing on students and youth workers. Doug and his wife, Angie, live in West Chicago, Illinois. They don’t have any kids, but they have 2 dogs that think they are children. Diesel and Penelope are Weimaraners  who never leave their side. Doug grew up in…  Read More