One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts.
Psalm 145:4 ESV
DEVOTION – AUGUST 4, 2019
I recently had lunch with a former student, and I was completely blown away by our conversation. I was surprised because everything that came out of his mouth was really mature. In my head, I still saw him as this crazy, squirrely thirteen-year-old who didn’t take life very seriously. Now, he is nineteen, and over the last few years, he has grown up to be a great young man.
During our lunch, he talked about his goals and his plans to achieve them. He talked about making hard decisions and how he was shying away from taking the easier options. He was reflective on his upbringing and discussed the moral foundation he had built over the years. He talked about how he had been blessed to grow up with people in his family and outside his family who poured life into him.
It was really cool to see that intentional care and attention given to his spiritual formation manifest into a young man who is ready to be a part of the church on his own. He recognized the importance of having this strong community around him, and he is encouraged about being a part of that for others.
I have prayed for this young man directly and indirectly for a long time. When I met him, I got to know his family and built a relationship with him. I prayed specifically for him and his heart.
For years, I found myself praying over this young generation as a whole. Prayers went up constantly, knowing the world today is way more different than it was when I was a student. I’ve prayed prayers to give this generation courage, prayers to build strong relationships, prayers to help them figure themselves out, and prayers to be bold in the name of Christ. This young generation needs the older generation to wrap themselves around them, build relationships with them, and walk alongside them.
In the book of Judges, the Israelites lived in cycles with God. Generations followed him adoringly and wholeheartedly, but other generations fell away until someone came and righted the ship. In Judges, chapter two, we see a man named Joshua who guided Israel for many years and followed God in all things he did. The people of Israel followed God right alongside Joshua. Though Joshua dies (Judges 2:8), the Scriptures say those who knew him and saw his life continued to follow God, but new generations came, and God was replaced.
Generations lived without knowing who Joshua’s God was, and it wasn’t until the next God-appointed judge came that they would come back to him. Generations knew God again, but in time, they would fall away from him. Thus, the cycle continued. Generations chose not to pass God onto the future, and that always caused Israel serious problems.
The future generation of our church is growing up and trying to figure this “life” thing out. They come from all sorts of backgrounds and situations. They deal with all sorts of difficulties and problems. They need people in their lives praying for them, directly and indirectly, daily.
In the not-so-distant future, those who are in currently in our nursery, children’s, and student programs (or those not born yet!) will be our church. They need encouragement, direction, and prayer for their lives. They need to know we are here for them and care about them.
We want them to grow strong and firm in the name of Christ, and we can help them do this as their church. We can be the ones who can help them as they grow. We are the church, from young to old: one day the young will be old, and they will get to do the same for future generations. We want generation after generation to always know who God is and share him with those who come after them.
This week, pray for the younger generations. Pray for the future of our church. Pray God will always be the center and the future generations do the same for those coming after them. Pray for strength and courage. Pray for protection and guidance. Pray all generations know him until the day he comes back.
Crossings Students Middle School Pastor
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