31 minutes ago
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Are You Religious?
I am excited about what God is doing in this generation.
Last weekend I spent 30 hours fasting with a group of approximately forty teenagers as we learned about the needs around the world, served in our community, and gave financially to World Vision (as well as played some crazy games!). It was a blessing.
I continue to be surprised by the desire for young people to get involved in needs and significant ministries. At the end of the Famine, as we took some time to reflect on the weekend, I was particularly struck by the words of Chad, our visiting missionary. He said that he was really impressed by the continued interest of our young people to care for the needy, and then he referenced James 1:27 - "Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world."
Those are powerful words coming from Chad. Chad is not one to just throw compliments around.
And the most interesting thing about that statement is there were many young people at our event that had never been to church before - no church background. Yet, according to James, they were exhibiting true religion.
These punk kids were being more religious than some people who have sat in a pew every Sunday their whole life.
So I guess my big struggle in all this is how do we bring these two worlds together? How do we continue to invite these unchurched, passion-filled young people and life-time church attenders and everyone inbetween to become true followers of Christ - desiring to know and learn about Him and then playing that out by caring for the needs of others?
It is a wonderful, challenging, overwhelming job. Thank you to all who are joining in it with me. Share with me your thoughts, struggles, successes, failures, and joys in this issue.