A great article regarding the implications of the developing adolescent brain through young adulthood and what that means for them as volunteers in your ministry.
Extended adolescence is not the fault of young adults. Sure, there are slackers. I’m guessing there always have been. But I think it’s wiser for us to examine ourselves, our culture, our churches, our homes, and stop pointing the finger of judgement at 20-somethings. Collectively, we’ve created the culture that isolates teenagers and young adults from adults and adulthood; we’ve created extended adolescence. They’re merely living into our expectations “You’re not yet an adult”.
It seems possible for some a few post-high school teenagers and young 20-somethings to step into adulthood, in some cases very quickly, to reverse the extended adolescent trend, or at least side-step it. I’m not talking about those outliers who naturally move into adulthood “early” by today’s norms, and would have in any culture, in any era; I’m talking about an average 18 or 21 year old newly leaning into the capabilities they already possess. What is required? In short: meaningful responsibility and expectation can you see where this is going, as it pertains to young adults in youth ministry?.
But don’t even start comparing your experience as a young adult in youth ministry, in 1982, to that of young adults today. Not the same thing, and you’re probably being revisionist in your memory anyhow.