I used to be into slack-lining. If you haven't seen it before, it is where you take a piece of webbing or rope tension it between to points and walk along it. It is a lot harder than it looks. The slack-line wobbles, and goes up and down. If you fall sometimes it can really hurt.
Today I have been learning from an online preaching seminar thanks to preachbettersermons.com. It has been an amazing experience. The point that really has stuck with me, was given from Andy Stanley. It is this: People love tension. I love slack-lining, why? For the same reason I love a good book, or a great movie. You want to see how the tension effects you or the person you care about.
This tension needs to play into our ministry. So often we focus on videos, and games to keep our youth engaged in ministry. While these things are fun and good, what would it look like if sometimes we held our Youth in tension through our teaching. What if we kept them on the edge of the seat.
I think about this time I was teaching about Jesus cleansing the temple. It was a lesson that wasn't going very far. Even though I had a great game before hand and brought snacks for the students to eat while I was talking, I could have stopped talking and I'm sure some of them wouldn't have even have noticed. So I decided to up the ante. I flipped a table onto the tile floor, then kicked a chair across the front of the room. A few kids screamed, the girl sitting right in front of me jumped out of her seat, almost on to the girl behind her. It was amazing, every student in the room from that moment on was sitting, listening to figure out what I was going to tell them about Jesus.
The thing was, by showing them there was some tension to resolve. Jesus wasn't happy He was serious, Jesus was becoming more lifelike.
If we mix things up once in a while, people will pay attention. And to be honest, when I am watching a sermon, or slack-lining with friends. I want to know what happens. So why don't we give our students something to get on the edge of their seats about.