As younger leaders engage in the ministry, they bring a set of fresh questions and concerns. Questions are healthy and good—they prove a leader is thinking.
Sometimes, however, I’ve watched older preachers blow off the questions of young men, responding with a spirit of pride, feeling offended that the younger generation would dare question our practices.
I believe, however, that I want to be part of this conversation. When those of us who have pastored for many years are solidly grounded in our position, questions are not a threat; they are a chance to explain the legitimacy of what we believe and practice.
There may be a few younger leaders posing questions who have already chosen a pathway to New Evangelicalism. We must realize, however, that most young leaders are simply doing what we did at their age—trying to determine their ministry philosophy.
Some younger leaders feel they cannot ask sincere questions or pose genuine dialogue lest their intentions be misunderstood. I believe that honest questions and transparent answers are vital marks of authenticity, and I wrote about this in chapter eight of The Road Ahead: 10 Steps to Authentic Ministry for Independent Baptists.
The infographic below expresses what I believe is a biblical pattern for interaction with young leaders in ministry.