The Habit of Relationships

Last night we wrapped up week three of Faith Underground.  Right now I’m cruising to the end of this series because the rest of the material is written, so it’s just a matter of producing it.  The goal for this week is to get things wrapped up for this current Confirmation group and things started for the next, in fact the end of the current Confirmation program is Saturday and the beginning of the new is Sunday.  Not my original plans but that’s how it worked out. 
I’m excited for this group of candidates because they are students who entered student ministry in my third year here; therefore, it’ll be interesting the fruit that they will bare.  We’ve also tweaked around the program so that students going through preparation are more challenged to get involved in local church.  And don’t get me wrong, that’s been our hope the last three years; however, the focus had been more on the what we want them to know and not so much on what we want them to do.  We have always been exploring the habits of a disciple with the students; however, we haven’t been as affective as having them try out these habits in a local church setting.  Why?  We still have students enter preparation for this sacrament feeling a little forced or confused.  We have a few broken systems, we have to encourage and get parents more involved.  There are a few reasons, but they all get solved by investing more in the relationships.
The growth we have seen in students over the last three years has been awesome and it’s because of the relationships our mentors have built with the students.   When you build these relationships it makes it a lot harder for students to separate themselves.  But in order to encourage the mentors in their relationships with the kids I need to invest in my relationship with the mentors.  One thing we can learn from the early church is that in order for a church to grow we need to be fully invested in one another.  A marriage won’t work if husband and wife aren’t invested in each other.  A business won’t work if the employees and employer are invested in one another.  The way Confirmation preparation is going to grow is through investing in one another.  So we’ll see how it goes.