Tag Archives: emerging adults

Facebook is seeking Authentic Community

8 Jul

I came across this article, and had to share it.  Facebook is now seeking how to develop community that is real and authentic.  Many churches are attempting to do the same thing – for a different reason.

At Facebook, mere “sharing” is getting old. Finding deeper meaning in online communities is the next big thing.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg is no longer satisfied with just connecting the world so that people can pass around baby pictures and live video — or fake news and hate symbols. So the Facebook founder wants to bring more meaning to its nearly 2 billion users by shepherding them into online groups that bring together people with common passions, problems and ambitions.

In this Wednesday, June 21, 2017, photo, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, right, talks with Facebook group administrators Lola Omolola, left, Erin Schatteman, second from left, and Janet Sanchez during the Facebook Communities Summit, in Chicago, in advance of announcement of a new Facebook initiative designed to spur people to form more meaningful communities with Facebook's groups feature. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Here is the full article.

The article explains how their leadership team is seeking to move Facebook from social sharing into communities where people find genuine community.  Community is powerful.  As humans, we were created to be in community with one another.  The ability to develop a community is so essential, that I present it as one of the basic developmental factors of adulthood. 

Facebook is facing an uphill battle.  While still the largest (by far) of the social media platforms, Facebook is facing decline among today’s adolescents and emerging adults who prefer to use Snapchat or Instagram.  Their decline in popularity is causing them to rethink how to create authentic community.

The main reason for this change is money.  Facebook made $27 billion dollars on advertising last year.  The longer that people stay on Facebook, the more income that they produce.

According to Anita Blanchard, virtual communities “can fill a fundamental need we have for a sense of belonging, much like eating or sleeping.”  The real hurdle is whether virtual communities, can truly provide undivided attention, a warm embrace, or show up when your car won’t start.

If you are looking for a virtual community to join, check out the EA Network – a network of people who desire to minister to the needs of emerging adults.

Related articles:

 

Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder of EA Resources, and the EA Network.  If he can help you minister to the emerging adults in your life, contact him at gdavid@earesources.org.

As more people claim to be “spiritual” more than religious, what exactly does that mean?

28 Mar

While in Johnson City, Tennessee, I began a conversation with a shuttle driver named Jeff.  He asked me why I was in town.  I explained I was speaking at a church, and said that he “hoped it was full of the Spirit.” 

I began asking him about his studies.  Jeff shared about his major, and what he wanted to do when he was done with college.  He was more than eager to talk about his life experiences, and how they had shaped him.  He was extremely articulate, and well-read in various philosophies. 

Here is the rest of the article, and what I learned that day.

Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources.

Premature Intimacy

9 Feb

 

wedding-1

Copyright by Aaron Roberts Photography 2016

 

I believe in purity. I believe in purity rings. I believe in setting physical boundaries in relationships in order to keep from hurting ourselves and others. This is something that is often taught, lectured, and discussed in Christian circles. However, I think we are missing something. Something BIG.

Physical intimacy is something to be shared only within the boundaries of marriage. God created a special connection called marriage for a man and a woman to enjoy sex and physical intimacy.

However, after years of working with students, I have discovered that there are many students who while keeping their bodies pure, have crossed over boundaries in other areas that I believe should be reserved for God’s design of marriage.

Is physical intimacy the only intimacy a man and woman can experience? As humans, we know that there are several types of intimacy that two humans can enjoy including emotional, spiritual, and physical. I believe that God desires to keep us pure until marriage in every aspect of our lives. I believe that intimacy in all areas should be reserved for marriage.

(While I am not usually into dissecting human relationships into different aspects, please be patient as you will quickly see my point without a drawn-out explanation of each area, or a need for distinct lines. I usually run from books that dissect relationships into a new way just to sell books. However, because of the Purity Movement, and its focus on the physical intimacy of teens, I felt this needed to be written.)

There should be boundaries in various areas of our lives that keep Christians from becoming intimate too quickly. Christians should be careful so that they do not cross the line of “two becoming one” before they enter into marriage.

For example, many young adults are surprised to hear that I do not encourage them to share their devotional lives. I do believe that guys and girls can and should pray together, but regular times of deep prayer/ bible study as a couple can cause premature spiritual intimacy. Your spiritual health becomes dependent on the other person, and so when the relationship is broken, you are left to pick up the pieces of your walk with Christ. Students should regularly talk about their spiritual lives, but boundaries should exist.

This is also true when it comes to emotional intimacy. Both guys and girls bear their entire hearts in a relationship, and then feel emotionally vulnerable after the relationship is over. No wonder they feel uncomfortable after the break-up and can no longer be friends. A boundary has been crossed.

I have worked with too many guys and girls who have not kept boundaries in their lives, and so with each broken relationship they wound their heart. These wounds turn into scars, and scars lead to calluses. A calloused heart can hurt a marriage even before it begins, so let’s guard ourselves from premature intimacy.

I am not saying that dating or relationships are evil. I simply want students to retain intimacy for the day that they walk down the aisle.

What are your thoughts and experiences? What do you think are some good boundaries to put up in a dating relationship?

Other Posts on Love and Dating:

David - Prof 2Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources.

 

 

Are we living in a ‘Post-truth’ society?

10 Jan

The Oxford English Dictionary has named “post-truth” the international word of the year.  Each year this designation is chosen based upon the word’s use during the past year, and how it reflects “the ethos, mood, or preoccupations of that particular year.”

Post-truth is defined as:

Relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective  facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals  to emotion and personal belief.

Editors of the dictionary report that the word’s use increased due to Brexit vote in the United Kingdom and the presidential election in the United States.  The word has been used as an adjective when paired with words like politics.

Our culture has shifted from a modern worldview to one that is postmodern.  This shift is foundation to how Millennials and emerging adults view the world.  Understanding this worldview shift is key if you want to understand and reach emerging adults.

David - Prof 2If I can help you understand how our world is changing, and how your community can adapt to minister to emerging adults, please contact me at gdavid@earesources.org.

Do we still believe in rape?

6 Sep

This news story has made me ask the question, “Do we still believe in rape?”

An 18-year-old accused of sexually assaulting two high school classmates is facing two years of probation despite the district attorney’s office’s recommendation of two years in prison.

PHOTO: Pictured is David Becker, 18, of East Longmeadow, Massachusetts.David Becker, of East Longmeadow, Massachusetts, was charged with two counts of rape and one count of indecent assault and battery, according to court documents, after an April 2 incident in which he was accused of digitally penetrating two girls who were sleeping in a bed after a house party. Becker and the alleged victims, who are not being identified, were all seniors.

You can read the rest of the article here!

Image result for brock turnerI hope that our nation still believes in rape.  Several high profile rape cases among young adults have received alarmingly light sentences.  A Stanford University student named Brock Turner received a six month sentence for what his father described as “twenty minutes of action” when he rapped an unconscious woman.

In David Becker’s case, the judge stated that “The goal of this sentence was not to impede this individual from graduating high school and to go onto the next step of his life, which is a college experience.”  The judge’s statement makes the assumption that all emerging adults go to college, and that college is an inherent right to young adults.

But the judge also believes that this sex offender has the right to a “normal” life.

I do believe in forgiveness and restoration.  However, I also believe in the importance of personal autonomy – which is the ability to make decisions and deal with the consequences.

Whatever lies ahead in this young man’s future (and I do hope it includes forgiveness and restoration), I do not imagine that this young man’s future will remain unaffected by his crime.  In spite of his light sentence, the social and psychological affects to his crimes will follow him for many years.

As I reflect on the judge’s assumptions and perspective, I see another viewpoint.

I am wondering about the victims.  Do his victims have the right to a “normal” life?  How will these events affect their college experience?

I am wondering about the growing number of victims from sexual crimes that fill our schools, homes, and churches.  I wonder if their stories are slowly being altered.  I wonder if their cries are being muffled.  I wonder if their wounds are bleeding anew.

I hope that our society can still see the benefit of morality.  In a world where sexual bondage is presented as appropriate (50 Shades of Gray) and where we promote and glorify the connection between sex and power, I hope we can find the God-ordained purpose of sex.

I hope that in this darkness, we can remove sex from the obsession it has become in our society and realize that sex will never fulfill us.

I hope that we still believe in rape.

 

David - Prof 2Dr. G. David Boyd is the manager of EA Resources, and the Founder of the EA Network, a network for those who minister to emerging adults.

 

 

 

How Evangelicals are Losing an Entire Generation – by Amy Gannett

30 Aug

I want to share this article because I have seen many Millennials who love the church, and work within it say a hearty “Amen” to what the article states.

Do not let your political bias, turn you off from what the writer is stating.  This is not a post that is intended to change votes.  It is a post that is intended to change Evangelicalism.  Don’t worry if you are not an evangelical.  Don’t worry if you don’t know what the word means – (many who claim to be one actually don’t know).  Regardless of the religious path you take, you can see why Millennials are questioning and blazing new trails.

Here is the entire article, and find out why.

8DU3KE91FPThis morning I want to throw in the towel.

The morning hustle began as it always does on Friday mornings. I walked the dog, drank the coffee, cleaned the kitchen, and headed for the shower. My phone in my hand, I checked Twitter (you know, because I’m current and all). Usually, my Twitter feed is a conglomeration of Trinitarian debates, quotes by dead theologians, and cute dog pictures. But not this morning. This morning, I had no more than opened the app on my phone and there it was: Wayne Gruedem’s endorsement of Donald Trump. Continue reading

National Congregation Study – What is changing among churches today?

29 Feb

The National Congregation Study led by Mark Chaves, sociologist at Duke, and Alison Eagle.  The study included over 3800 participating congregations representing 70+ Christian denominations, plus Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, and other religious groups.  The third wave of this report was recently released, and is available at this link.

Here are five observations from the study.

pew and hymnal1.  The Growth of non-denominational churches.

 The number of congregations claiming no denominational affiliation increased from 18% in 1998 to 24% in 2012.  White mainline congregations, and the people in those congregations, are older than the congregations and people of other religious traditions.  I believe that this trend is going to continue as Millennials (and other generations) do not want to be defined by a denominational label or the culture baggage that some denominations carry.

 2.  The Continued Growth of Megachurches.

Most congregations are small, but most people are in large congregations.  People are increasingly concentrated in very large congregations. The average congregation is getting smaller, but the average churchgoer attends a larger congregation.  I believe that many people run to large congregations because they have been hurt by the church, but still love God (a group often referred to as the “Dones”).  These large congregations allow them to remain hidden while spending time worshipping the God they love.

 3.  An Increase in Diversity

There is increasing ethnic diversity over time both among and within American congregations.  Diversity (in ethnicity, socio-economic factors, and religious beliefs) is valued by many younger generations, and so I expect this diversity to increase.  Truly diverse congregations will become magnets for Millennials.    

 4.  A Desire to connect with their Local Community

Food assistance is by far the most common kind of social service activity pursued by congregations, with more than half (52%) of all congregations listing food assistance among their four most important social service programs.  Social action is important to Millennials, and churches should have a clear passion for service within their local communities.  However, serving the poor will take much more than clearing our pantries from an abundance of canned goods.   I fear that many churches pursue this route in order to alleviate guilt over Western consumerism.

 5.  Traditional Boundaries into Leadership are Falling.

 Acceptance of female lay leadership is very widespread, with 79% of congregations allowing women to hold any volunteer position a man can hold, and 86% allowing women to serve on the main governing board.  Congregational acceptance of gays and lesbians as members and lay leaders increased substantially between 2006 and 2012, but acceptance levels vary widely across religious traditions.  Those congregations who restrict leadership for various theological reasons might grow as they gather dissident members of accepting communities.  However, as Millennials and younger generations become the majority of the populous, these restrictive communities may have trouble replacing their aging populations.

(A boundary that I believe needs to change is the restriction of leadership within the church due to age – READ MORE.)

The Spiritual Landscape of America is changing rapidly.  How should your community respond?

David - Prof 2Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources, a non-profit organization that is driven to educate and equip parents and churches who desire to minister to emerging adults.

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