Flint Hills Bible Church - information about the purpose of our youth ministries
DOXA: Student Ministries
DOXA: We need constant reminders that our purpose in the world is to glorify God. That’s why we gave our youth group the name DOXA. It’s the Greek word for GLORY. We love the book of Titus, especially chapter two, which speaks of Christian discipleship. In Titus we read this about our call to live for the glory of Christ:
“For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.” Titus 2:11-15.
DOXA reminds us that followers of Jesus Christ renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, are living self-controlled, upright, godly lives with glad expectation, awaiting the appearance of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. In short, DOXA serves to remind us that we are to live for the Glory of Christ and not our own, until He returns. Maranatha Lord Jesus! Please pray this would be evident in our youth group here at FHBC.
DOXA PHILOSOPHY OF MINISTRY is directly tied to our purpose. We recognize that it is very difficult for spiritually immature people to live a godly life for God's glory and it is absolutely impossible for someone who has not been regenerated. To this end we draw our philosophy of ministry from Colossians 1:28-29 and Titus 2:1-6.
From Colossians we see that a gospel-driven, Christ-centered and Christ-aimed ministry seeks to present everyone mature in Christ. How do we accomplish that? From Colossians we're told to proclaim Him (that is Christ), warning and teaching with all wisdom. We see here a ministry that is marked by being Christ-focused and drawing all our attention to the supreme example, Jesus. (Philippians 2:5-11)
In order to be biblical in our approach to youth ministry we must have a major emphasis on teaching the word of God and presenting Christ. This is done through our different youth group meetings, Wednesdays, Sunday school and other events.
Discipleship is another feature of DOXA as we seek to proclaim Christ and present each one mature in Christ. We see from Titus 2:1-6 the importance of older and more mature believers teaching younger less mature believers. We recognize that it is God's design that the primary persons on the discipleship team of each student are their parents. We do not want to usurp the parents authority and responsibility here (Deut. 6:4-7, Eph. 6:4) but only seek to come behind parents as assistants in our desire to disciple the students that the Lord has entrusted to our shepherding care. If a student is a genuine believer according to Ephesians 4:11-12 the church, in particular pastors, have a shepherding responsibility to them as well.
Youth ministry is a lot of work and so we need to be constantly reminded of our Lord's words in John 15:5 that apart from Him we can do nothing. Even in our ministry verse (Col 1:28-29) we have a great reminder. In v. 29 we see that even though proclaiming Christ and seeking to present each one mature in Christ is what we toil after, we are to do it with all His energy that powerfully works within us. This is key. This means walking in the spirit (Gal 5:16-26), this means disciplining ourselves for the purpose of godliness (1 Tim 4:7-8), it means abiding in Christ (John 15:1-5).
Who is involved in doing this ministry? Every saint. Ephesians 4:11-12 tells the pastor to equip the saints for the work of the ministry. No age requirement, just new life in Christ. One of the fruit that we expect to see as students mature in Christ is they become less self-centered and more Christ and others centered and they begin serving and being a blessing to others rather than having a consumerism "what's in it for me" mentality. Our goal with those students is to provide opportunities to serve and use the gifts the Lord has given them within the youth group and also the greater context of the local church that the Lord has joined them too.
A note of encouragement to parents
No matter what stage you’re in with raising teens (just plunging in, somewhere in the middle or coming to the home stretch) the encouragement is the same; the time and energy to do things God’s way and for His glory is worth it! We must remember that the end goal of anything we do isn’t the results. As followers of Christ our end goal is to do everything for God’s glory as we labor as unto Him. So the end goal of our parenting is not the salvation of our children. I know that sounds wrong. But it isn’t. The end goal in our parenting is to glorify God as we minister to our children and call them to repentance and belief. Part of biblical parenting is training children to obey God by requiring them to obey the authority placed over them, their parents. So how can you do this?
Here are two things to focus on.
Don’t be a hypocrite: If you expect your children to obey you, you should zealously model obedience to God. You are called to “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly” Col. 3:16. Are you in the word of God faithfully, drawing wisdom from the Lord and demonstrating a dependence on Christ? Are you “neglecting to meet together” Heb. 10:25? Do not allow your children’s sports or extra curricular activities be the center of your home such that attending church plays second fiddle to things of only little profit. 1 Tim. 4:8.
Make your kids go to church! There, I said it! Consider the alternative. When we give into our children’s wicked hearts when they don’t “want to go to church”, we are training them to listen to their sin sick hearts that are deceitful. Jer. 17:9 Remember the goal of parenting is not to be your kid’s BFF. It is to obey God and trust Him by leading your family His way. Their only hope of salvation is found in the Gospel consistently and faithfully taught. Rom. 1:16 Second only to your personal ministry to your kids, the most loving thing you can do for your children is to require them to be in those places where the word of God is being taught specifically aimed at your teen. (Youth Groups, Sunday school, Camps & small groups).
These teen years are a formative time and believing parents are called to be faithful and consistent biblical witnesses. A great resource to help you parent in these teenage years biblically is a book by Paul David Tripp called, Age of Opportunity. If Doxa staff can be of any assistance to you to that end please don’t hesitate to talk to us.
For more information, please contact Pastor Alvin at 620-342-0081.