The Obamacare of Youth Ministry

Jimmy Kimmel made a very clear statement on his show last week, through tears and an incredibly emotional story of his newborn son requiring open-heart surgery he praised the Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare"), ending his 13 minute monologue with the profound and simple truth, 

"No parent should have to decide if they can afford to save their child's life."

We all agree with this statement...right?

Yet, the country is still divided over their healthcare plans.

(Please, understand two things here - I'm Canadian, so I completely embrace and love the idea of 'free' healthcare for an entire nation. Also, all I know about politics I learned from SNL...and at the occasional check-in with MSNBC for an evening to catch up on Trumpville).

This is absurd, right?

The hope is to get more people the basic necessity of healthcare. The hope is that if you happen to break an arm you don't have to cut it off (along with a leg) to pay for the visit to the hospital. It seems like this is exactly the way it should be. Yet, the leaders seem to enjoy a system that keeps them in control, even though it only helps some, not all of the people they serve.

So there is a divide, there are arguments, and there is disappointment over the way the HealthCare system is run.

Meanwhile, the sick people - ya know, the ones that are desperate for this healthcare - don't care how it happens, they just need someone to show they care, who knows what they're doing, to help them get better. 

The belief for many of these sick people was that healthcare is for the elite - those who are in the club - and the rest of us will spend our lives figuring this out for ourselves. Until the Affordable Care Act was introduced there was only one option. They didn't think there was a way for them to get the care they needed, and now there is.

Yes, the plan has issues. It has been messy. It has problems that need to be addressed, but it's a start. It is beginning to pull back the curtain and reveal that getting caught up and lost in the consumeristic nature of the crazy-big-expensive-healthcare-industry, there are sick people here that simply need a doctor. 

The one consistent thing in all the Youth Ministries I've encountered is this: 

there are teenagers here that simply need a community.

It is within authentic community that Youth are most likely to understand the authentic love of Christ. So what are we doing to make sure that every teenager has the opportunity to find the authentic community they need to survive?

The way we've been doing things has worked for some. But what are we doing now as the culture changes, as deep needs are being revealed? Are we, the church, able to shift as well?

May we not get so caught up in the programs we are used to that we are making it difficult for teenagers to have access to their most basic need - relationships.

If the current thing is keeping people from getting the basic necessity, then maybe it's time to try something different, even if that means it's going to be messy for a while.