One of Webster’s main definitions of culture is, “the characteristic features of everyday existence (such as diversions or a way of life) shared by people in a place or time.” Culture is such a fluid thing that sometimes I find myself feeling washed away in the currents of it without much firm ground to stand on, especially when it comes to teenage culture these days. It seems like one day something or someone is “in” and literally the next day it’s “out” and they’re into something new. This cultural wave can be incredibly overwhelming to us as parents and leaders of teenagers. Thankfully, there are ministries and resources out there that the Lord continues to provide for us to know how to be learners of teenage culture.
One of those resources is a ministry called Axis. Here is their mission statement:
Our mission is to empower the next generation to think clearly and critically about what they believe and to take ownership of their faith. We do this not by outsourcing parents, but by resourcing them to disciple and transfer legacy to their children as they face life’s questions and challenges. We also support faith leaders in churches and schools by providing content and facilitators who effectively introduce and address life’s toughest topics.
Pretty cool, huh?! If you click HERE, you can opt into an incredible tool that they update and send out each week called the Culture Translator. This is an email that is filled with the highlights of what is happening in teenage/pop culture for the week. It may include anything like new sayings, hot new artists, trending apps, informational articles, latest shows released on Netflix, etc. It’s been a game changer for us as a staff in helping us be aware of what is happening in the lives of teenagers and opened the door for us to have more conversations with students about things that are happening in their world. We hope the same will be true for you as well!
As followers of Christ, He has given us a ministry and a message–to be ambassadors for Him in the world (2 Cor. 5:17-21). Rather than avoiding or conforming to culture, He’s empowering us to step into culture, learn about it, engage with it, and speak Truth in love into it! It will take work on our parts, but oh, what worthy work it is!
Know that we are always here for you, wanting nothing more than to equip you to continue discipling your students and pointing them to Christ. We are with you in the trenches!
This is our prayer for you as parents and leaders of teenagers: Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. -1 Corinthians 15:58