Turn Your Chair for Teenagers

thevoiceWhat if we treated teenagers like the coaches from ‘The Voice’ treat contestants?

Have you seen the show on NBC?  Judges sit with their backs to potential contestants so the only mechanism to judge a singer’s expertise is how they sound.  There are no preconceived notions based on appearance.  No judgments on personality or age.  Only the ‘story’ matters.

I wish people would treat teenagers like this.  I wish I would treat teenagers like this.  How many times have I made a snap decision about a kid based on what they were wearing?  A kid whose pants were hanging lower than I thought they should…or who was decked out in her hipster glasses and plaid shirt?  I love students – and I still get irritated driving into the high school parking lot while lovers display their loyalty to one another and loners make their lane shuffle, staring at their sneakers, holding up traffic.

I wonder what we would hear if our backs were turned and we really listened to their stories – their voices.  I think, like the coaches on The Voice, we might The Voicebe blown away by something spectacular that we would have missed taking them at face value, with our lame labels and our instantaneous intuitions.

Those stories beckon me to slam my button every time, displaying those coveted words by would-be rock stars…and almost every teenager…


Author: Darren Sutton

I've been in student ministry nearly 30 years…which generally just confirms how much I still don't know. Some days I'm the pizza-eating, over-responding, teaching-on-the-fly, desperate-for-volunteers, frustrated-with-co-workers youth leader that we all are. And sometimes…I knock it out of the park. I'm everywhere on social media that you are!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: