“Children are our future”
It is phrase often said and a sentiment repeatedly expressed.
But, as Christians, I want to challenge that thinking.
If we want our children to be our (as the church) future, they need to be our present (as the church).
While it is true that throughout the years to come, those who are now children, will (hopefully) go through an amazing process of learning, experience, trial and error, maturing that will make them into the adults of the future, the leaders.
But right now they are also our present.
We cannot forget that or diminish the importance of that reality!
AND WE NEED TO BE FULLY PRESENT WITH THEM NOW!
Scripture shows many examples of how God used the young for His glory. Look at David and his willingness to stand up to Goliath. Josiah, who was crowned king at 8 years old, reigned for 31 years with a legacy of righteousness. Samuel, while still a “boy,” was called to by God in the middle of the night with a prophetic message. Jesus told his followers not to push the children away but instead to learn from them.
And to Timothy, Paul said this, “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
While it is true that, we as parents and adults have been charged to train up a child in the way they should go, so that when they are old they will not depart from it. Children are not only the future. They are the present. They have importance, worth, value, and purpose NOW.
“Training up a child” is more than preparing them for a future, it is leading them in the present, walking alongside them in the here and now.
Sometimes we adults have to humble ourselves enough to see when God is calling them, as a part of the Body of Christ, to lead us!
As an adult, what “children” has God placed in your life for whom you should be fully present? Regardless of your age, how is God calling you to live for His glory, to fulfill His purpose here and now?
Tonight I am praying for all of us “adults”… that we can be equipped by God for the awesome task given to live life with and preparing youth for now and the future. And I am praying for “youth” that they whole-heartedly step into the role God has for them in the here and now, while seeking Godly role models to learn from as they mature for the future.