Youth: The Capacity for Changing Their Status…and Our World

Posted: March 29, 2011 in Youth Culture & Trends

A little glance into the world of today’s youth and you’ll quickly notice they’re all about, and living in a world of constant change…changing their;

  • Facebook/Twitter/online social media status
  • clothes/fashion tastes
  • hotmail address
  • friends
  • school studies
  • music
  • tech gadgets
  • their minds…and sometimes ours!

Change is a constant staple in the lives of youth, and with having to deal with the influences of the changing landscape of media, fashion, technology, etc… in an ever-increasing rate, it’s no wonder that today’s young people are a can of Red Bull waiting to burst!  When I was a teenager, the cultural world around me ‘evolved’ about every 2 years or so…maybe more depending on your exposure.  Today it seems to evolve and move on every 6 months or less.  So does living amidst so much change increase the capacity to cause change?

I have always strongly believed that teenagers (and ‘kids”) can be used to bring about radical and lasting change.  You see, I’ve always been irked when I hear the old cliché “our kids represent our  future” (insert Charlie Sheen ‘DUH‘ here____).  Now I don’t disagree with that statement (in essence), but I think we too often either leave out, or maybe don’t even take into consideration, that kids, tweeners and teens are also the _____ (church, leaders, trend setters, catalysts, etc…) of TODAY!  Our younger generation has incredible passion and capacity for bringing about change…I mean just ask Alex & Brett Harris, Zach Hunter, or the youth who spear-headed  demonstrations in Cairo, Egypt that played an influential role in the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and his 30 year tenuous reign on the country.  And we haven’t even got into the band of young men and their 30-something leader who sparked a world movement in 1st century Palestine that is still moving today!!

So it should come as no surprise that when Time magazine recently came out with a series of articles based on its forecast of 10 ideas that would bring about change in the world and society as we know it, that youth were #1 on the list!  If I didn’t personally agree with this notion…well…I don’t really think I’d still be immersed and involved in youth ministry and culture after 17 years…and the desire and passion to want to keep journeying with youth is still burning!  I know I’m not alone in how I feel, but I wonder how many young people out there agree that adults believe in their capacity for positive change…and even more so…how many actually believe this about themselves?

I created a poll on the subject, and would love to get your thoughts…and I’ll share the results at the end of next week.  You can make up to 3 selections…so let’s hear your thoughts!

  1. Bety Heppner says:

    How can we can help to reprogram their minds so they have freedom to choose their true identity according to the gifts and talents given to them and not a personality that somebody else wants to impose because is cool or in. Using the technology that they have access now or in the future.

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