This losing of our youth…
This vast exiting from church….
Church should not be a place of perfection, of hiding behind smiles, greeting one another superficially, pretending all is okay when we might be harboring fears, doubts, pain, griefs ……
It should be a safe place where questions can be asked, even if answers are unknown. Instead we sometimes say not to ask questions, but to just believe. Maybe we are afraid to be honest, to admit we also struggle and have doubts or maybe think it would make us look weak….
We should not just tell them to be good or else they will make Jesus sad, because no matter how hard they try they can’t be good all the time. We do tell them that Jesus loves them, but do our actions really show them that truth? Do we tell them that only God can enable them to do the right thing and encourage them to go to Him, or do we just give rules and come down hard when they mess up? Do we share our struggles and show where we mess up? Do we show them what a merciful God we have, full of love and compassion, Who always forgives? I hope we do, at least most of the time.
It should be a place to be loved no matter what, a place for confession and healing, a place for uniting and building up! It should not be a place where fear reigns but a place where we can find rest knowing that we have a common bond, a place to pray and love and cry and hug, to be a family with God as our Father. It’s not too late! Our young people are crying out. They want to be heard and accepted for who they are, not what we want them to be. And yes, sometimes they will shock us, sometimes they will thrill us, sometimes they just want to know that we understand. They will also make mistakes just like we all do. If we will just listen to each other we just might be able to humble ourselves together before God and His Word and really learn the TRUTH…...because in the Bible is where we all find forgiveness, instruction, and the knowledge and wisdom we need to live as children of God. And when we all bond together in Christ, the world can’t help but sit up and take notice.
Thinking of all this reminded me of this beautiful song by Ken Medema that I found on you tube HERE
If This Is Not A Place.....
If this is not a place where tears are understood.
Then where shall I go to cry?
And if this is not a place where my spirit can take wings,
Then where shall I go to fly?
I don't need another place for trying to impress you
With just how good and virtuous I am.
I don't need another place for always being on top of things;
Everybody knows that it's a sham.
I don't need another place for always wearing smiles,
Even when it's not the way I feel.
I don't need another place to mouth the same old platitudes;
Everybody knows that it's not real.
So if this is not a place where my questions can be asked,
Then where shall I go to seek?
And if this is not a place where my heart cry can be heard,
Where, tell me where, shall I go to speak?
So if this is not a place where tears are understood,
Where shall I go, where shall I go to fly?
My prayer is that we Christians will return to the Word of God, immerse ourselves in it along with prayer and thanksgiving, and make our churches places where we are not afraid to face our differences but lovingly and prayerfully find peace by being obedient to God, even if some things seem very hard and go contrary to what we desire.
What are your thoughts?