“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity.”- 1 Timothy 4:12
We are in full swing and smack dab in the middle of graduation season. A graduation marks a major accomplishment that should be recognized. For any who have a loved one wearing a cap and gown, walking the stage, receiving a diploma, and advancing to the next chapter of their education/career journey, we celebrate with you!
In this celebration season, my mind is on the amazing potential and purpose of this generation. Despite the unique and numerous challenges our young people face, with culture bombarding them at every dimension (i.e.- identity, sexuality, anxiety, drug use, peer-pressure/bullying, family crisis), God has a plan for our kids, teens, and young adults. Psalm 145:4 tells us, “One generation commends Your works to another; they tell of Your mighty acts.”
Presently, I am overjoyed and overwhelmed from seeing young people following Jesus and watching as God is raising them up to accomplish great things! Not only do I have four young people in my home, but I am hearing/seeing a theme of God doing a new work in this generation:
- We are seeing the miracle growth of more youth and young adults at Restoration Church.
- Our church mission statement includes the call to “Release” people to live in God’s purpose and share His love with others. This means women and men, young and old, long-time followers of Christ and new believers.
- At this year’s Foursquare Conference (100th anniversary) there was a focus on the next generation. It was moving to watch young adults prayed for at a main session and young children seeking God in the student classrooms.
May the family of God and the Church of Jesus be a community where this generation is noticed and needed, equipped and encouraged, valued and given voice, loved and allowed to lead, precious and promoted, spent time with and spoken over, cared for and called out! Personally, I want to see our young people serving in the church (we need more greeters/ushers, sound/video help, and worship team members), participating in our services (sharing testimonies, leading communion, praying, and even teaching), and leading in key areas (on staff, church council, outreach teams)!
At this generational graduation, we present the class of 2023 with the words in 1 John 2:14, “I write to you, dear children, because you know the Father. I write to you young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.”