I grew up in the church. But if I could go back and insert one thing that was desperately missing in my youth group experience, it would be Gospel Training.
When youth group rolled around each week, I distinctly remember going for friends and the cute boys, but never the message or the activities. And it was because I was bored.
Since I’d grown up in the church, I thought I’d heard it all. So when it came time for the message, if I had heard it before, I tuned out. Partly because of arrogance, but also because I wasn’t being challenged in my faith. All I seemed to be getting was information overload, with no driving passion or practical skills that would motivate or equip me to share what I was learning about Jesus with others. I was missing one of the most important puzzle pieces: how to live and give my faith to others.
How many of you grew up in the church where this important puzzle piece was missing too?
A lot of well-meaning youth leaders try valiantly to keep their youth groups engaged using games and music, hoping the fun will keep teens around long enough to hear the message. But with no faith-sharing passion or tools to help their students live on mission for Jesus, many youth leaders discover that their students’ attention (and sometimes their active faith) begin to fizzle out.
Gospel Training: A Valuable Tool for Youth Leaders
Gospel Training is a valuable tool for youth leaders.
Besides being spiritually beneficial, when a believer knows the full message of the gospel and can share it with others, they are responding to Christ’s call on every believer’s life (Matthew 28:16-20). But, if we’re being honest, sharing the gospel with friends, family and strangers is a challenging call to be obedient to (even to the most experienced evangelists!)
So how do we help teens overcome these challenges and remain faithful to Christ’s call?
Gospel Training! Gospel Training is a way to give teens (and even youth leaders) a simple and clear way to know and share the gospel message. Because with it, a believer can go anywhere and bring the greatest gift in life to anyone.
How One Student Used Her Gospel Training
For the last 25 years, Dare 2 Share and its founder, Greg Stier, have trained and equipped over one million teens across the nation how to engage in relational gospel conversations — from takeoff to touchdown.
Recently, Greg ran into one of these students in Switzerland. She shared with him how her Gospel Training from high school impacted her life then and continues to bear fruit today!
Watch Emily’s story:
How cool is that? One Gospel Training mobilized Emily to reach her friend for Christ back in high school and she continues to share the gospel today.
And that’s just one story of the impact Gospel Training ignites.
Gospel Training Events Carry Eternal Significance
If you want to give your teens a tool they can use for God’s glory that will yield impact for a lifetime, take your students to a high-quality, catalytic Gospel Training event. As you choose an event, look for the following critical elements…
Note: this short list is a collection of wisdom Dare 2 Share has gleaned over the last 25 years of training and equipping teens to share the gospel.
Every great Gospel Training should have:
- A Motivational Catalyst — Without a driving gospel passion and fuller understanding of Jesus’ call to share His message with others, evangelism can turn into a guilt trip, rather than a privilege. Being Jesus’ ambassador to a lost and hurting world brings meaning, purpose and focus to life. This foundational truth is often the missing puzzle piece that leaves many young people aimless and unfocused in their walk with Jesus!
- A Clear and Simple Gospel Presentation — A clear and simple gospel presentation allows students to not only learn the gospel themselves, but also to remember the message when it comes time to sharing. Teens, like adults, experience a lot of emotional and mental hurtles before sharing their faith. A short and clear gospel message sets them up for conversation success!
- A Complete Gospel Message — In addition to presenting a clear and simple gospel, it needs to be a complete gospel message. That includes everything someone needs to know in order to make an informed decision about putting their trust in Christ.
- Engaged Training — As you’re well aware, every teen in your group learns differently. Some are auditory learners, while others learn better when standing on one leg with their pointer finger on their nose (no joke!)
Make sure the Gospel Training you choose specifically targets teens and creates a fun and engaging way for your teens to learn. After all, who doesn’t enjoy learning when it can also be fun?
- An Opportunity to Practice — The Learning Pyramid indicates that people remember what they learned 75% better when they can practice it. When teens practice sharing their faith, they not only learn it better, but are also forced to critically think about their beliefs.
During our outreach events at Dare 2 Share, we call this “owning their faith”. Teens go from believing because their parents believe, to adopting those beliefs as their own. Their faith deepens as they better understand why they believe what they believe.
Practice also increases your student’s confidence by lessening emotional and mental barriers to faith-sharing. Two obstacles that keep people from attempting new things are fear of failure and fear of the unknown. That’s why a great Gospel Training event will prioritize faith-sharing practice so that teens can get past these fears and discover that they are capable of sharing their faith.
Give the Gift of Gospel Training
While sharing the gospel may never be without risk, it doesn’t have to be unapproachable. Given the right tools, your teens (and any believer) can boldly step out in their faith to share it.
So when you give your teens the gift of Gospel Training, you’re equipping them for a lifetime of sharing the best gift on the planet!