I remember, all those years ago, as a teenager at school being asked for my take on the Christian sexual ethic to not sleep with a partner before marriage. I totally fluffed it. The blood seemed to instantly drain from my brain. I felt under pressure, embarrassed and totally ill equipped. I think I even lied about what I thought. The worst part of that terrible memory was that I was being asked by a friend, who genuinely cared what I thought. How I hope that the current generation of teenagers are braver, more informed and more prepared than I was.
The team behind a new resource want to help our teenagers in situations just like mine. As their website explains, “Out of the Question is a series of animations to equip young people to give a reason for the hope they have.”
The Out of the Question team clearly have in mind a key verse for apologetics,
But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect. 1 Peter 3:15
Our teenagers are in a culture where the Christian worldview is misunderstood, ridiculed and attacked by their friends, peers and often their teachers. They need to be prepared to give an answer. Who will prepare them so that those moments of confusion and isolation can become moments of hope, gentleness and respect? These animations are designed to model a conversation between the cynical unbeliever and the regular, hard pressed Christian. These short stories come with discussion questions and role play ideas. This website is giving us the tools to prepare our teenagers to give an answer.
In Gareth Crispin’s helpful introductory video he identifies that “You don’t always have to be on the defensive all the time. When someone asks you about your faith, you can ask a question back… The beauty of asking questions is that it makes people stop and think about what they believe and why. When people stop and think, they’re in a great place to start listening, too.”
Imagine our teenagers going into their schools, colleges and teen hangouts ready, prepared and even excited to ask questions back when they’re put on the spot. They can be confident, rather than aggressive or desperate, and able to probe the lack of viable solutions that their peers have to life’s deepest questions.
These animations aren’t perfect. As with any resource they will grate with some and the discussions coming from them might feel a little awkward. But this is a great start. And our teenagers need help. Desperately.