How to Make Jesus Appealing to Teens

by Ralph Heibutzki

Known as a time of self-questioning and rapid physical development, the teenage years are anything but ordinary. With many churches losing young people along all denominational lines--and a culture that prizes entertainment over content--leading teens back there is no easy task. It can be done. Here's a wonderful path to make Jesus appealing to teens.

Get The Basics Right

Determine your potential audience. Figure out if they believe in God at all. In terms of what direction to take and how to reach them, that can make all the difference.

Get to know your audience on a non-religious level, as well as a religious one. Show you care about young peoples' hopes, fears and dreams. Context is everything, especially when it's time to present the teachings of Jesus.

Present your testimony of how Jesus Christ transformed your life.

Prepare a clear, coherent lesson plan to tie all these items together, so you can answer questions appropriately. After all, teens place a premium on personal experience.

Lay Out Your Message

Explain in clear, simple terms how the life of Jesus and His message are relevant to your audience's concerns. Ask direct questions to inspire discussions about the moral concepts you want to cover.

Compare Christianity's view of Jesus with other religions, so teens see how it squares with the Bible's description. Review all facets of the personality of Jesus as shown in the BIble, such as his anger to drive the money changers out of the temple.

Plan activities that encourage teenagers to see Jesus as a real, ongoing presence in their lives. Making an outreach effort like knocking on people's doors or helping the homeless are also ideas that can show a power to change and help as Jesus did.

Be there for a teen who is questioning their faith. Being a positive role model is important. Living the message can leave a much stronger impression on a teen than talking. Seeing someone living a positive, giving and happy life can make them want to be more like--and share in your strong faith!

Items you will need

  • Bible
  • Concordance (to look up relevant verses or concepts)
  • Lesson plans
  • Meeting venue
  • Youth leader (or pastor)

About the Author

Ralph Heibutzki's articles have appeared in the "All Music Guide," "Goldmine," "Guitar Player" and "Vintage Guitar." He is also the author of "Unfinished Business: The Life & Times Of Danny Gatton," and holds a journalism degree from Michigan State University.

Photo Credits

  • Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images