Enjoying the Journey
It is my privilege to speak to young people on a regular basis. I have to admit that they are my favorite group to preach to! You always know where you stand with teenagers. My heart is always stirred as I look into their faces and consider the potential in every one of their young lives.
More and more as I look into the eyes of Christian young people I see a sense of apathy. Resignation. Defeat.
Could it be that the enemy has successfully convinced an entire generation that their world is too far gone? Their lives too insignificant to impact 7 billion people? The condition too bad for them to make a difference?
The devil is a liar. He always has been and he always will be. And he is lying to a generation. Perhaps they will be the last generation that will have an opportunity to evangelize the world. At least they are the next generation in a long line of believers – a line that must not be broken.
We scold. We fuss. We plead and wonder why there is no sense of urgency.
To listen to most preachers this is the worst time in history to be a young person. “Things have never been worse than they are now.” Is it possible that we are simply contributing to an already discouraged generation?
Goliath is too big.
The enemy army is too large.
Experienced soldiers have settled in to “wait it out.”
David is too young to turn the tide.
The “Saul syndrome” has crept in like a cancer and it is spreading quickly. Yes, “evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived” (2 Timothy 3:13). Don’t stop – read on! The next verse declares, “But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and has been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them.” We cannot keep our eyes on the rise of evil…or on ourselves. All eyes must be on the Unchanging One!
THIS GENERATION NEEDS HOPE! Not mere sentimental thoughts. Not lip service to orthodoxy. Not a history lesson from past generations. We must reaffirm what we know for sure:
- God’s Word is still true!
- The Lord is still on the throne of the universe!
- The gospel still has power to save wicked sinners!
- The Holy Spirit is still with us!
- The Father still hears and answers prayer!
- The local church is still God’s way of accomplishing His work in this world!
- Revival can still happen!
- The Son of God is still coming!
Bible hope is connected to what we know to be true. It is not wishful thinking! Another generation needs to embrace the truth and advance in hope.
Every week I talk to young people whose lives are being controlled by fear. No money. No direction. No certainty about the future. No faith. They desperately need the message that the Apostle Paul gave to a discouraged generation of believers in his day:
“Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle. Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work” (2 Thessalonians 2:15-17).
Some things never change. Young people need something to hold and something to hope. Deep beneath the complacency is a generation of young people wondering, “Is there not a cause?” Indeed there is! And this is their time to fulfill it.