Hebrews 13:17 “Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.”
I’m not sure there’s ever been a bigger “me” generation than today. Yes, sure, I came from a generation of rebels, we did our thing, we went against the grain, I purposely did much of what I shouldn’t just for spite and to “buck the system”. It’s a little different today.
In my day (not long ago, I’m only 42, class of 1992) even though we rebelled, there were still such thing as undeniable truths. Now everything has switched over to a Burger King type of society “have it your way and it’s right” is the battle cry of many young people today. Unfortunately that’s even bled over into the church.
Why not? Parents are being told by Government that they shouldn’t parent. Boys are being told they can be girls if they “feel” like they are and vise-versa. We’re being fed that anything that offends us we must avoid or put a stop to immediately, even free speech!
There is also a virtual buffet of Christianity to choose from today so that if they’re preaching something I don’t like I can just keep going other places until I do find it.
This all has led to many young people today being more full of themselves than they are of God. They’re more full of what they want, than what God wants and they regard their own will over spiritual authority in their lives.
I’ve worked in Youth Ministry for over 8yrs now and have pastored some incredible young people (still do, shout out to 4:12 Youth!) but tragically I’ve also seen many fall by way of pride and social circumstance. Youth that went from being on fire for God, to being on fire for themselves. Unfortunately, I’ve watched many walk away from God completely, many end up in false doctrine (even making up their own as they go along, see Burger King comment above) and even some in jail. Many of the young people I’ve pastored did great until the day came that I actually “pastored” them. The day came that I told them “no” or the day that I told them “this is not good for you and I don’t see good things down the road for you if you make that choice.” When what I advised conflicted with their own will, my advice fell and their will won out. I’ve yet to see the end result be a positive one.
No, not because I’m super smart or super-spiritual but because of what the scripture says above. As a youth pastor my appointment from God is to watch for the souls of the young people I’m involved with. Sometimes that means I tell them something that don’t sit well with them. I rely solely on God and the leading of the Holy Ghost for that wisdom and understanding.
I learned as a very young Christian the importance of being submitted to the man of God in my life. I’m thoroughly convinces that many of the blessings of God that have been poured out into my life were a direct result of that submission. I fully realize the reason I’m as strong in my faith and in doctrine as I am today is because I followed the Biblical principle of being submitted to those that God put over me. It’s probably the reason I have the walk with God I have today. Those men kept me on the straight and narrow paths even when they’re words rubbed me absolutely the wrong way! Still, I was determined to be obedient to God’s word no matter how it rubbed my own will!
For those who may read this, if you’re purposely undermining your Pastor or your Youth Pastor’s authority in your life let me warn you, you’re in a very dangerous place and it as I said, I’ve never seen it end well, not once. For those of you that have made up your mind that you’ll follow the word of God and the advice and leading of those God has put over you, you’ll endure, you’ll be tested, you’ll be persecuted but………….YOU’LL BE BLESSED!
In Jesus’ name….amen.