Okay, are you like most of the women’s ministry leaders who are of the boomer generation, are you wondering why young adult women are sometimes not attracted to what you offer? Have you asked yourself, and your team, "how will we pass the baton of leadership and ministry to the next generation if they aren’t involved now?" This is a question I, along with hundreds of other boomer age leaders are asking right now. We are seeking answers and praying that God will help us to willingly yet faithfully pass leadership to young adult women.
From Official LifeWay Research and the book Lost and Found, Stetzer, Stanley & Hayes we learn about four markers that are important to grasp as leaders if we want to reach the next generation of young women for Christ. Those are community, depth, responsibility and connection. Let’s look at each of those in this post and take them apart further in upcoming posts.
1. COMMUNITY: Together is Better
Young adults made these exact statements when asked how they feel about church involvement.. "There’s No Place Like Home", "We’re Family", "I’m All Alone in a Crowd", "You Don’t Fit, So We Don’t Care", "You’re Struggling. I’m Struggling, No Games." These comments tell us that many times young adults do not feel connected to others in relationships at church, but they desperately want to be. They want people to be "family" to them when they interact with Christian friends.
2. DEPTH (and Content): Let’s Go Deeper
Often, young women will not be satisfied with surface theology. They want to truly understand the hard stuff of the Bible and of Jesus, and grapple with it. But, they want to interact in discussion, not be lectured. Some of their comments reflect this: "Let Me Safely Join the Conversation", "Help Me Find My Way". We must not make them feel less spiritual if they do not know the right lingo.
3. RESPONSIBILITY: Let’s Make a Difference
Young adults today truly want to make a difference in their communities and their world. Involve them in God-sized tasks that will change lives and they will commit their time. Listen to their comments: "Wow me, befriend me, and let’s make a difference", "I’m hungry to be challenged," "What are you selling? I don’t want to join a country club. I want to join Christianity, a movement that draws me in," "There’s got to be more than this-something more than just my little world." Show them how they can make a difference in their community and the Kingdom at the same time.
4. CONNECTION: Bring Us Together
Young adults are looking for mentors and friends of all ages who have gone through experiences they are about to engage. Older women think they have nothing to offer young women of today, but that is just not true. What life experiences have they had that would resonate with a young woman about to face it, or who is in the midst of it already? Help your older women discover their God stories and learn how to connect with other women through them.
Complete research results for young adults.
And visit our young adult web site to find ministry helps and young adult resources at Threads.
How are you building community, depth, responsibility and connection among your young women? I’d love to hear your ideas. Watch for future posts where we will delve deeper into each of these issues and discover practical tips for reaching our young women.