Youth ministry succeeds because it directly reflects Jesus Christ’s approach. It’s not overvalued today; it’s undervalued. The hard work required for its success has been misunderstood and misrepresented. The first part of the book establishes that case and analyzes the pros and cons of current, varying philosophies and approaches, merging their best aspects into the holistic approach demonstrated by Christ. Part 2 introduces Attachment Relationship Ministry (ARM), a lens distinguishing four primary adolescent relational styles depending on how secure or insecure teens are with God and parents. Part 3 encourages strategic relational ministry sensitive to those styles, explaining why youth leader efforts succeed or fail.
Chapters offer realistic discipleship and evangelism suggestions depending on attachment styles and practically empowering youth workers (volunteers, newbies, experts, and interns) to focus energy and time more wisely. These recommendations relate to spiritual formation, leadership selection, parental approach, and trending issues, such as ministry to LGBTQIA teens. For too many teens today, feeling insecure in crisis is a way of life. Learn how to take what you’ve done well and make it better. All church leaders should read this book, logging the critical importance of providing ministry specifically targeting teenagers today.
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