In studying through the Old Testament at youth meetings, we arrived at the instance of Miriam and Aaron’s rebellion against Moses. This led to a discussion on authority, as well as how God designed authority to work. This could also work for the passage of Scripture which relates Korah’s rebellion. Though youth are tempted to view teachers/parents/pastor/youth leader as people in authority who just enjoy bossing them around, the truth is that they have a huge responsibility in caring for those in their charge, and they will answer to God for how well they fulfilled this role.
We have a really good group of youth, and after discussing just how important it is to honor our pastor/elders/etc, they were willing to participate in an exercise the following Sunday morning at church. We have a small church (about 60-70) and our pastor often asks for spur-of-the moment testimonies on Sunday mornings before he preaches. Our surprise for him and his wife was that one at a time, the youth stood up to give “testimonies” of how much they appreciate our pastor and his wife, with specific examples. One said that our pastor’s wife is a tremendous worshiper, and she learned from her. Another said that he appreciated their example, another their sincerity and obvious love for the flock. Since the youth were creative, specific and authentic in their remarks, this was all the more effective. By the time all who wanted to say something had done so, our pastor and his wife were in tears. They were so encouraged. Some of our youth didn’t want to stand up and say anything because of a fear of speaking to a crowd, and I didn’t oblige them. I did heartily encourage them, however, to overcome their fears in order to bless others in this way, and those who did were really glad that they had done so.