This is a good thing.
Some of the young people in the churches I associate with are experiencing life in the presence of God like generations before have not experienced. This is a positive thing. I realize it also means something is bad, but for the future, it is a good thing.
Why would the elders be silent? How is silencing them a good thing? Let’s find out.
While the young people are doing life a little differently, they are causing a jaw-dropping effect on those who are watching. The young people are finding life in Christ that traditions and closed mindsets never fulfilled. The old ways of thinking as “Brethren” or “Mennonite” are not necessarily being challenged, but they are being showed up.
The old ways of thinking as “Brethren” or “Mennonite” are not necessarily being challenged, but they are being showed up.
We’ve all heard it: “Today’s youth are the church leaders of tomorrow.” This mindset is a lie from Satan, and we are being deceived. I recently looked up the definition of a leader. It basically is someone who “goes and does by example.” Today’s youth are leading the church. They are not leading by position or influence, but by the fruit of the Spirit that is springing forth from their lives.
This is why the elders are silent.
1. Some of the older generations have not gone as deep into the things of the Lord as some of the young people are going.
Q & A
Q. Why do young people rather play softball than come to church?
A. We want to experience truly united fellowship that goes beyond all wearing the same team color.
Q. Why don’t young people come to Sunday night services
A. We could be drawn closer to God and worship better at a campfire with friends.
Q. Why don’t young people seem interested in taking church seriously?
A. Because we may be seeing things differently and be turned off by meetings, traditions, and formality.
Q. Why is it only the young people that show up at the rescue mission or go caroling?
A. Something is wrong with priorities, strength has been lost to Satan, and God has not been real or important.
We tend to be a proud people. However, the young people I know who are experiencing real life in Christ are not proud. This is not a matter of thinking the young people are better than the older people, but it is a matter of truth. The young people are finding the truth, and it is changing their lives. So the question is not who is better, but rather whose lives prove what is better.
So the question is not who is better, but rather whose lives prove what is better.
I believe that this passion in some could easily cause resentment in others, and some may feel like the only thing left to do is be silent because they’ve been outdone. You may be thinking of throwing 1 Peter 5:5 out there right now, “Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.” Rest assured, in everything that is happening, I have seen an earnest, pleading, humble attitude of respect.
Young people want to talk about our abundant life in Christ, not a “Brethren Doctrine.” We want to go deeper into the things of the Lord. We want to talk about spiritual warfare. We want to talk to and meet the needs of our families. We want to support missions, not start new churches that will be like ours. We want to learn how to relate to people. We want to testify and share the victories and struggles of our lives. We want to be comfortable bringing up spiritual things spontaneously with you.
Change is one of those things that we could talk about here. Why is it that the older people refuse change, and the younger people crave it? Is it rebellion? If so, against who, the church or against God? I’ll answer that. No, it is not rebellion against God, but rather submission to Him. We don’t just want to change things — we want to honor God
We don’t want you to be silent. We desperately crave for you to speak to us by the fruit of the Holy Spirit in your lives. The young people are in no way trying to outdo anyone. Their intentions are pure and right, and it is crucial that you believe that. Our generation is taking the spiritual climate higher, and I sincerely hope this is met with humility and praise on both ends.
Our generation is taking the spiritual climate higher, and I sincerely hope this is met with humility and praise on both ends.
2. Some of the older people are not talking to God like some of the young people are doing.
Q & A
Q. Why do young people hate reciting the Lord’s prayer?
A. We want to incorporate what Jesus taught about prayer into our prayers.
Q. Why do young people want to change the format of our closing prayer?
A. We don’t want prayer to just be a formality and a placeholder in a service.
Q. Why do we keep messing up counsel and missions?
A. We don’t pray.
Q. Why don’t young people come to midweek prayer meeting?
A. We don’t want to get a shower, dress up, and drive to church just to pray for someone’s gall bladder.
You see, young people pray differently.
Young people long to pour out their hearts to God. We want God’s Holy Spirit to fill our lives. We want to enter the presence of a Holy God in awe and reverence. We want to have a simple unrehearsed conversation without worrying about what others are hearing us say or how good we need to sound. We long for a deeper understanding of the ways of God. We cry out in our brokenness and unashamedly testify of God’s goodness.
How can I say this? Because I see it. If you don’t see it, don’t assume I’m making it up; only assume that you missed it, and ask questions as to why that may be happening.
Young people love spontaneous prayer groups. I personally have experience times when young people got together, without adults even knowing, just to pray. It is awesome to see so many single young people come together with such a desire to pray. I see the young people not only starting and running a ministry outreach but praying like crazy. They could spend the evening complaining that the older ones at church don’t understand or support it. But no. They pray. We spend more time praying than teaching. We pray for each other, we pray for the children, we pray for anything that the Lord has on our hearts or that we are facing in our lives. And let me tell you, God is overjoyed.
I haven’t seen the roof blow off, and I’ve never seen the walls shake, but I have seen young people pray with fervor, and the presence of the Holy Spirit has resembled that of His first coming in the book of Acts. The elders don’t know it. The parents don’t all know it. But God knows it, and God is listening, working, and smiling.
But the young people are silencing the elders.
This Silence Needs To End.
To those who are not silent.
Thank you for an example. Thank you for your passion in seeking the face of God. Thank you for taking on the mind of Christ. Thank you for praying so much and so real. Thank you for your outreach, your love and commitment to sharing the life you have found. Thank you for your respect for your elders, and for your pure desires to see your church united in the Holy Spirit at the foot of the cross. God is smiling.
To those who are silent:
We do not rebuke you but rather entreat (ask someone earnestly or anxiously to do something) you. We love you. We respect you. We want you to be free. Please, humble yourselves and pray. Seek the face of God. Makes your past right. Intentionally lead your families. Admit to losing or failing to find abundant life in Jesus. And if you want, feel free just to walk up to someone younger than you and say, “Can we pray together?”
And as He approached the descent from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the miracles they had seen:
“Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”
But some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples!”
“I tell you,” He answered, “if they remain silent, the very stones will cry out.”
DISCLAIMER: As always, there are exceptions. This post is not meant to be hyperbole, but a wake-up call to all of us to examine our spiritual condition.
Please read part two, The Silent Cry for Help from the Church Pew Behind You. It comes to a surprising conclusion!