What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word millennial? Lazy? Commitment Issues? Entitlement? These are just a few of the major stereotypes that revolve around the millennial generation. But as a millennial myself, I can tell you that these aren’t always true when it comes to my generation. In fact, I think there are some really great attributes that millennials have that can often be missed or overlooked that can bring great value to the church.
1. Millennials are Creative
Millennials tend to have a creative outlook on a life and problem solving. They like to see how things are being done and ask the question “Why are we doing it this way?” and seeing if there is a better more effective way to do something. This is not because millennials hate traditions and think that their way will automatically be better than everything that has been done in the past. We have always been challenged to think outside the box, so we like to take a new approach and perspective on things. However, we do appreciate that advice from the seasoned and more mature adults on why they think things will or won’t work. But we also want you to trust us and encourage and support us when we make an out of the box or creative decision to try something that you might not agree with.
2. Millennials are Energetic
Well, I will be honest with you on this one, it is very dependent upon the day for me if I am feeling the energetic side or not. Mostly it depends on if I stayed up too late the previous night binge watching something on Netflix. But in all reality, we like to bring the energy, and not just when we help chaperone student camp, but in everyday life as well. We don’t want any big group gathering, or any gathering for that matter to feel dull and boring. Some people chalk that up to the fact that we want to be entertained everywhere we go from the movies, to work, to church. That’s not what I am saying at all. We like to bring the energy, because when there is energy then more people get involved. And who doesn’t like a fun and energetic time?
3. Millennials are Resourceful
I think we can thank our creative thoughts for our resourcefulness. We do not always have everything that we need to make something work at our disposal. A lot of times we will have to think outside of the box a little to pull something off with limited resources. Just go watch any student camp recreation time happen and you will understand what I mean. You can use a rubber chicken for just about anything! Millennials can quickly think on their feet and figure out how to use the limited resources that they might have around them to pull off some really cool events and programs.
That is just a few quick reasons why millennials are not as bad as their stereotypes can make them out to be. So, I challenge you to use your millennials in church. Ask them for their ideas and input, and when they say something that seems totally outside of the box to you, listen to them and encourage them. You never know of the good things that might come from it unless you give them the freedom to try it! Harness the energy of the millennials around you and use that to help the energy flow from every aspect of your church body! Take a step back and watch and see what the millennials can do with the resources that are given to them. I might be a bit biased, but I think that the millennials can do far more if you just give them the chance!
Young Adult Minister / Operations Associate