When Young People Lead
"I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people; for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceable and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.” -The Apostle Paul, in 1 Timothy 2:1-2
When Young People Lead
Most of what teens hear about the Presidency will come from Kid President, Saturday Night Live, conversations from their parents, and their uneducated peers! So, how can we lead them in a more balanced and accurate view of government?
The Presidency is a shadow and a presence that resides over any one person. Responsibility of the Presidency is bigger than any one who has ever served in that capacity. Whether we did not vote for the seated President, agree with the political platform of the seated President, or believe in the religious faith of the seated President, we must pray for the President, his family, and the cabinet who serve with him daily.
And further today, with the next President in the process, we must take this opportunity to educate and inspire young people to have a say in the process. I have been challenged to address teens and Youth Leaders to be active in their involvement of the selection of the President and in their influence of America at this time.
Teens Impacting The Government
First, to PRAY AND PETITION AND INTERCEDE that the calling of the Presidency and the hand of God will shape the next President in office and into the person that God created them to be. This person is, after all, a child of God and not the enemy. Pray with me that almighty God will shape them into the best husband, father, wife, mother, and President they can be. Pray that our President will find themself in the presence of God daily and that the Spirit would guide them to an intimate relationship with Jesus.
Second, that THANKS-GIVING and RESPECT would be the speech of the American teenager as it relates to all of the authorities over them (government, civic, corporate, and spiritual leaders). Our words are powerful and they create attitudes that in turn create actions. What kind of actions are we creating with our words? Hateful? Racist? Divisive? Or, loving, healing, and unifying? Put away our party platform ideology and thank the Lord for our leader. I know that God is much more present in the White House and the affairs of our nation than most of us think. Thanksgiving moves the heart of God, and, gratefulness is an atmosphere the Spirit can work in. Be careful of our words. And be a team player.
Third, I am praying for PEACE AND QUIETNESS in our world. That our leaders would create this with their words and actions. That we ourselves would do the same. And that this peace and quietness would spread across the planet by our powerful example of Godliness. I have watched students for more than 30 years and believe that they begin as peacemakers and are raised as cynicals. We cannot lose our childlikeness. Our students can lead an awakening that heals the racial divides, places justice into action, and sets a humility in culture that creates honor and respect amongst people. Maybe our students need to see Youth Leaders who are current in news. From their watching and reading habits to their preaching and teaching. Developing a healthy understanding of government.
And finally, for the Youth in America to SPEAK UP and not be quieted. Teens have the power and influence to rise in cultural influence in this "Teen Decade" of 2013-2019. Seven years of youth emphasis and leadership like we have never seen in history. We need youth to rise in natural and spiritual leadership in every community. As spiritual leaders we do not merely 'pastor churches', we 'pastor communities.' They are the only living generation who has not seen a spiritual awakening. I am challenging young people today to get involved in a local Church and help repair the failing reputation of the Body of Christ. From the young people that I see across America, I have no doubts that our teenagers are going to lead the next great awakening in America.
The United States of America And The Church
Youth Ministry must have these discussions with teens. We cannot allow secularized society to be the only input our students have to acquire their knowledge of politics. And we cannot raise another generation that is neutral to their involvement in government. America hasn't seen the Church lead and influence our culture in decades. But this younger generation has a great opportunity for that to change.
Remember, Kings are placed in their position by people and by God. And don't doubt that Kings can be shaped by His Almighty hand. One of the things missing in our present culture is respect and submission to authority. It is difficult for a society permeated with narcissism and autonomy to submit to authority. But, it is in submission that we find great strength. Because ultimately we are submitting to God Himself and not simply a President.
We must be team players. Because we lose an election doesn't mean that we can 'take our ball home and ruin the game for everyone else.' In closing, what does Paul say this will bring? His answer is clear in 1 Timothy 2. Peace, quietness, Godliness, and holiness. Our prayers for President and America will bring great healing upon our land. Pray for God's Almighty hand and that the power of His Spirit would remain upon our nation in these coming days.