5/27/10 Israel, Martin, Martin, Erica - late teens
It was late afternoon as high school students were getting out of school, and I asked a group of four high school students on a sidewalk about their views on God and eternal life. One student took the lead in answering my questions, with comments like "I think I'll end up in hell, I hear that's where the party is" - which he said more for the sake of bravado in front of his peers. They all basically agreed they thought they were overall good people, and a few said they thought they shouldn't be punished because although they have sinned they haven't had a chance to do the good things they think they should do to make up for those sins. The whole "conversation" was hard for me because the lead kid I was talking to received phone calls that left me with the other kids who only wanted to listen. This was partly because other teens would walk by and of course they are all very self-conscious of how they appear in front of each other. The group changed over the course of the 20 minutes or so that I talked, with some original kids leaving and new ones joining. Israel, Martin, Martin, and Erica heard most of what I had to say about our accountability to God, His judgment, and his mercy shown through Jesus Christ. In hindsight I feel like a busy sidewalk is not the best place to talk to easily distracted teenagers.