Posted by Kurt Johnston
In Hollywood there is a concept among screen writers and directors known as “The Third Door”. Basically, this is how it works: The first door represents a direction a story might take that is very predictable…very traditional. The audience would know what is coming, anticipate it and usually be completely satisfied. An example might be the traditional formula of “Boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy wins girl back”. That whole formula is very “first door” Especially the “boy wins girl back” part.
Second door is when the story opens a door that is less expected….one that the
audience probably didn’t see coming. A great example of this would be in the movie The Breakup starring Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston. At the end of the movie, right about the time you are expecting the classic, first door, ending….that they would get back together, the story opens a second, less expected door: The characters remain friendly, but DO NOT get back together! Not the expected ending to a movie that seemed to be following the traditional formula. The ending was a second door ending.
Third door is when the story goes someplace COMPLETELY different….it takes a twist that people would say they never saw coming; a twist they would have never even thought to anticipate. For example, a third door ending to The Breakup might be that in the last scene, as the two characters are running across the street to embrace, kiss and reunite, one of them gets run over by a bus. Fade to black and roll credits.
What does this have to do with junior high ministry? I think far too many junior high
ministries run our programs, our camps, our small groups and even spend our one-on-one time with students in a FIRST DOOR manner. Kids know what to expect, it fits the formula, and most people are satisfied. It is safe, predictable and easy.
But what if we started to think about SECOND and THIRD door ways to minister? What if we did things, asked questions, taught lessons, and interacted with students in ways that were a little less predictable?
My challenge to you this week: Find one or two areas in your ministry and try something THIRD DOOR!