As an experiment I went into a store recently with the idea of finding my product and purchasing it without any human interaction.   That was easy!
I began thinking – what about our youth groups?  Can a student attend Sunday morning, youth night, or any youth event and have no human interaction?  After being in youth ministry thirty-seven years and observing and being involved in many youth functions, my answer is “yes”.
How many students walk into your youth room each week unnoticed, un-welcomed?   How many slip by every leader in the room without anyone greeting them or asking about their life?
In our society we have become used to drive-up banks and take-out windows.  There are even drive-ups for prescriptions now!   We have little human contact in a lot of situations.  Better yet, the internet has enabled us to totally interact virtually with absolutely no human contact.
It is easy to become so wrapped up in a youth event that we forget to actually greet students. There are so many who arrive carrying so much emotional baggage with them that its hard for them to speak on their own.
We are made for fellowship. Of course, that need for fellowship is met by a relationship with God first.  God also made us social creatures and we need each other.  We need others involved in our life and vice versa.  Every one of us desires to be noticed and to be counted worthy of others’ attention.
Here’s a challenge:  At your next event, personally greet every student who walks through the door.  If the task is too big for one person because your youth group is too large, assign your workers to different areas so you catch everyone.  It will seem forced at first, but soon it will grow into a natural way of doing things.  Students will begin opening up to you and your fellow workers.  They will be willing to share their baggage so you can help them unpack their baggage.  Your impact becomes greater as you lead them through godly principles of how to deal with life.
A sideline blessing – As students see leaders really caring they will join in.  Some really great ministry opportunities will begin to happen.

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