By Melissa Mitchell, Youth Intern with City Church Boise
Being a teenager today is not easy. With cultural influences and social media, teens are filled with anxiety and bombarded with unrealistic self-image goals. We want to point them to Christ and teach them how to walk through life’s struggles by abiding in His grace. We seek to help our teens find their identity and life in Christ, even as we model what it looks like to rely on Him in all we do.
City Teens, the City Church Boise youth group, isn’t like most youth groups I experienced growing up. Though game nights were fun and water balloon fights let me show off my competitive side, I craved answers to life’s tough questions. I wanted deep friendships and a trusting relationship with my leaders as I shared the struggles of being a teenager with them.
God has used my past youth group experiences to better understand and encourage the teens at CityChurch Boise. We still have fun group activities, but we place a larger emphasis on intentional relationships and one-on-one mentorship.
Our teens love our mid-week time together, where we focus on understanding and living out the gospel together. In addition, we provide space for them to ask hard questions without judgment over coffee or in small groups. We continually seek to encourage our teens with God’s Word as we do life with together them and call them into Christ’s mission with us (e.g., caring for local refugees and reaching out friends).
This is what I craved as a teen and what we seek to do with the youth of CityChurch Boise, as we pursue the way of Jesus for the renewal of our city with them.