Several weeks I drove through the campus of Toccoa Falls College near where I live and watched hundred of students streaming toward the auditorium of the college for their chapel service. I looked at these young faces and remembered being where they are. That was a long time ago, actually 35 years ago and so much has happened since then, in my life but also in our culture. I also looked at them and thought about how they will one day be where I am now. Unless the Lord returns first, these young people will be looking back to their 35 years no doubt living in a world so different than ours today. I find myself in these reflective mood wondering what the church will be like and how many of these young people I saw streaming toward their chapel service will be leading the church.
Recently I was able to sit down with one of the professors of Toccoa Falls College (TFC) to talk about this and many other things related to our youth culture today. His name is Rich Griffith and he serves as professor of Youth Ministry here at TFC. Rich Griffith is the single dad of two (adopted) sons, Aaron (19) and Dylan (16). After some time in the U. S. Army, he has spent 29 years in Youth Ministry exclusively while working in a variety of Church and Para-Church settings including Young Life (helping to pioneer Young Life’s ministry to early adolescents called “Wyld Life”), Ministry Architects and Military Community Youth Ministries. He has been a Lead Pastor for the past 4.5 while also still serving in a variety of Youth Ministry capacities. Obviously, he is passionate about youth, families and The Church. He is a published Author and Contributor to “The Teen Devotional Bible” as well as other Youth and Ministry related publications. Currently, Rich is the Professor of Youth Ministry at Toccoa Falls College and Pastor of a Church in Cleveland, GA. He has a Masters of Theology and completing his Doctorate in “Youth, Family and Culture” – both with Fuller Theological Seminary.” Rich also hosts a week radio program called 2 Bad Brother and A Bible.
Here’s the whiteboard chart we reference during the interview
Check out Rich’s weekly radio program, Two Bald Brothers and a Bible here: