Preparing for a life of faith: Hand in Hand

imageTime magazine, within the past two years, claimed  that British youth are violent, drunken and out of control.

Its headline reads: “Unhappy, Unloved and Out of Control – An epidemic of violence, crime and drunkenness has made Britain scared of its young.”  It also poured scorn upon the parenting abilities of the British, claiming they do not spend enough time with their children and cannot cope.

More than a fifth of Britons avoided going out at night rather than risk encountering groups of intimidating youths.  “It’s easy to see why.  The boys and girls who casually pick fights, have sex and keep the emergency services fully occupied are often fuelled by cheap booze.”

It said that British youngsters drink far more than their European counterparts, are more frequently involved in violence and are more likely to try drugs, adding that English girls are the most sexually active in Europe.  It’s small wonder then, that a 2007 Unicef study of child well-being in 21 industrialised countries placed Britain firmly at the bottom of the table,”

With that as a background, what a vital task parents have in co-operation with church children’s and youth workers:

There are two principles here:

1. God is holy; and we must do things his way in order to please him. Therefore, we must know what the Lord says and then actually obey him by doing just what he says. Our standards come from God’s standards. As these commands have been taught to us, we need to teach them to others.

image2. God wants us to think in terms of generations. We are not only to think of our children but our children’ s children. The ‘you,’ ‘your children,’ and ‘your grandchildren’ reflect three generations. What we do with our lives greatly impacts the lives of the next generations. The ‘fear of the LORD’ is the conscious presence of God, which influences our lives. Many people live their daily life as if God has nothing to say about how they should live.

If a generation only has knowledge of his commands and no love for Jesus Christ (where Christianity has degenerated into a mere religion), then the next generation will depart from those commands.

How do we avoid this generational decline?

imageParents and church communities have to pass on the fear and knowledge of the Lord to their children and children’s children. They need to do everything to pass on a heart and passion for the Lord as well as knowledge of the Lord’s commands.

If we live compromising lives, then we live as if we are already in the second generational stage. Our children will, for the most part, leave the Lord. They do not believe because we do not really believe. Genuine faith always touches our life’s priorities. Only a false religious faith permits a division between ‘belief’ and life.

So what a privilege!

image1. To see them grow to love God

To see them discover a lifelong walk with Christ, a personal commitment of faith, a meaningful prayer life, how to worship in private and corporate settings, knowledge and understanding of Bible truths and how to live as a Christian in a world of religious pluralism.

 

 

image2. To see them love one another!To see them grow in their understanding and acceptance of themselves and therefore an ability to love ones neighbour as oneself, as well as a commitment to Christian morality within relationships – especially in sexual matters, and building Christian community.

 

 

 

clip_image0023. To make disciples themselves!To adopt a Christian life-style in a world of limited resources and inequitable distribution of resources and power,   –  make constructive use of their leisure time, witness about their personal faith, choose a vocation, steward of their money, time, and abilities, and participate in mission.