Had an interesting exchange that led me to this train of thought.  Some of you may be aware of the fad right now where you message a FB friend a number, and they post a comment about you on their wall.  So I sent in a number and a few hours later came the status post.  Apparently, he stated he learned a lot from me.  I was intrigued and decided to delve a bit further into it, asking “What was one thing that stuck with you?”  I was expecting maybe a lesson I had taught in our youth ministry or a sermon or maybe even a conversation.  His comment back to me was (paraphrasing), “well honestly it’s the way that you deal with people … how you talk to us <I’m assuming the youth group> that is different from most people.”

I’m not a communications major, but into my head came Marshall McLuhan’s coined phrase, “The medium is the message”.  Like many youth leaders, I usually focus on the content of my teaching which leads to the overall focus of the youth ministry.  Yet I’m starting to think, if communication happens primarily through non-verbals, should I focus as much time on content and perhaps be more cognizant of how I communicate.  I’m not talking just about the delivery of a message and beyond exemplifying faith through my lifestyle (which in some ways is unintentional teaching).  I’m wondering if we as youth leaders need to prepare for our times with our youth with the same energy, but a different focus i.e. not as strained on content (though it is part of the communication, perhaps may not be THE message) but somehow gets translated into non-verbals.

I’m still not sure what this means exactly in terms of curriculum development and all that, but these are the continued ramblings of a short Chinese Christian.

Advertisements