For every breath we take, we are blessed. God is so good, all of the time. God would never put more on you than you can handle. God loves you, no matter what.
I can go on for days with statements on the goodness of our Lord and Savior. But, earlier in my life as a youth, living in a city where death was on every corner, I had very little faith and no true relationship with God. I often wondered, where is this God that my mom spoke of, and why would this God allow so many of my friends to die at an early age. I did not have a real connection with the goodness of God. It was not until I met my wife in college and started to attend Saint Mark UMC in Wichita KS, that I learned that God is inside each one of us. If things are going to get better we must get in step and do God’s will.
Now lets fast-forward 30 years. Today I am dealing with youth who were like me, living a life without Christ. I see the despair in the eyes of the kids I work with on a daily basis. I ache for them. I hate to see them living without knowing that God wants them to come to him when they are sad, or even when they are happy. How can we change their outlook on Christ and strengthen their understanding of God’s grace and love?
We have to prepare the youth and adults in the church to go beyond the walls of the Church — going beyond the walls to preach the word of the Lord. You do not have to give a sermon on the street corner, or pass out flyers saying you are going to Hell if you do not come to our church. But, you can plant that seed through your daily living. Praise God when things are going good for you and when God brings you through the dark moments of your life. Every time you shake a hand you can say, “God loves you and so do I. ” You can ask your friends or neighbors if they would like to go to Bible study or church with you. You can plan and setup events at your church, not only for members of your church, but also for the community.
Growth will never happen overnight. It needs to be watered, nurtured and permitted time to sit in the sunlight. We must pray and continue to work hard to reach all of God’s children, young, old and any age in between.
If not us, then who?
Grace United Methodist Youth Director
Safe and Sacred Trainer
Loving God, Loving Neighbor