The Younger Generation

August 31, 2017
by Iris Ford

Years ago, when I was a student deaconess serving a new church on the Canadian prairies, I can remember that the only person who had grey hair was the organist. Now, I look around in church, and most people have grey hair. I am saddened to see no young people attending. Do you see this happening around you today? Fortunately, there are many churches that are filled with young people.

Sadly, many youth who were raised in church have split from Christianity and church life. I wonder if they feel that the Christian faith is not meaningful to them. It may be that they went to church only because their parents did. They don't have a first-hand faith — it is not personal. Jesus is just a name. He has no deep significance to them.

Only prayer can bring the Christian faith alive in an unbelieving heart. Are you praying for your young people — or is it our own hearts that need to change?

Another possible reason for a lack of interest in Jesus is that activities once considered sins are becoming increasingly acceptable in society — but not to Jesus, Who said,

Mark 7:21-22 – For it is from within, out of a person's heart, that evil thoughts come — sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. (NIV 2011)

Doesn't this describe our society today? As I watch the television, I am shocked at how these faults show up among the youth of today. Our society is becoming more evil and thoughtless, and the youth do their own thing. Many are not the least concerned about church. Paul describes what will happen in "the last days":

2 Timothy 3:2-5a – People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God — having a form of godliness but denying its power. (NIV)

Sadly, this does describe our modern society. We need to pray for our young people — and all of us — for we live in an evil world. Is your church reaching out to those who are lost and alone?

We need to ask God to show us a way to reach out to our families and friends for Christ, for what is missing is the love of God shared among all, with Jesus' hand on them blessing them with His love.

Prayer: Dear Lord, we are very concerned about our families and the whole of society. We ask for Your Spirit to come into our lives as we share with our children and grandchildren. Speak to them of Your love through us. Lord, we love You. May Your love so spread through our community that our youth will be touched by Your loving Spirit. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Iris Ford <iris_ford@telus.net>
Parksville, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Hi Iris
    Thank you for your devotion this morning. I enjoyed reading it.


    Oh Iris, how true this is in our society these days. Praying for revival among the youth, parents and grandparents. All ages need Jesus Christ in their lives. Blessings.


    Dear Iris,
    I always appreciate your devotionals. My friend and I have been prayer walking in our little village. I will share these thoughts with her and we will be praying for the youth as we walk.


    Iris,
    You nailed it!
    Now, let’s all pray!
    (CA)


    I agree with you, where are the young people. Other main line faiths are having the same problem.
    Recently a clerk of session said we can get 1000 out for soccer but we do well to get 3 for Sunday School.
    We must come to grips with this problem.


    Good morning, Iris. Thank you for your devotional this morning: it is a most accurate description of what has been and is and what we (I) need to be doing. Thank you for your faithful ministry through your devotionals: they are a gift to us all.
    Blessings.


    Hi Iris,
    There are indeed a lot of people, both young and old who are not interested in going to church anymore.
    We pray so often that a change will come about.
    Thank you for writing
    Blessings.


    Amen! May the Lord encourage all believers to make prayer a daily (several times daily) routine, praying for His Grace to fall on our society, and for His power to ‘open the eyes of the blind’ people all around us. We need your help Lord to be praying constantly for the salvation of the people around us, for we know that no one will come to Christ unless You, Father, draw them. Therefore, we beseech you Lord to make prayer warriors out of all your people, and start with us, please. We ask in Jesus’ Name. Amen


    Hi Iris
    Thank you for your tender heart for not only the youth but the many who lack a faith that
    strengthens and comforts.
    Here in Toronto there are dynamic churches that reach youth, others are as you say, mostly older folk.
    As you and I both know the elderly are also in need of faith and I thank God for leading me, with no church background, to a church during my teens.


    Greetings Iris,
    Thank you kindly for the devotional this morning. It truly expresses the situation of our world today and especially the fact that so many of our churches lack attendance of young people and children. The scripture reference of 2nd Timothy, chap. 3, is right on of so much of the things we hear happening today.
    Lord’s blessings upon you,
    (B.C.)


    In some churches we see only grey hair, but not all. Demographics mean that there are more baby boomers now than young people. But in the church I attend there are several families of four generations. There are classes and activities for all ages, and all well attended. The teenagers often raise money to go on missions. At my grandson’s recent graduation from Christian High School I was amazed at the confidence these young people have in Christ.
    Don’t give up on youth just yet, Iris.


    Iris
    You certainly have that right (unfortunately). There are fewer and fewer to pray for those who know not the sacrifice Jesus made for us!
    Some spend time going to their church to earn their salvation…. when Jesus died on the Cross that we may receive our salvation.
    I do pray for a revolution in our own churches in order to have them attend more often to receive Jesus as their personal Savour. Many seem to believe that Baptism is all that is necessary!!!
    I do pray for them.
    God bless.


    Iris, thank you for another wonderful devotion. I often wonder what this world is coming too with all the evil that is going on. Although my kids and there families have been good and no trouble to me, two have strayed from the church and no longer attend. I find sports take priority to attending church on a Sunday. It is sad.
    I often think of our days at CGIT weekly meeting and camps and believe that we lost a lot when it disbanded and kids no longer have the encouragement of the church to learn the principles that we learnt of
    Christianity. Now the only thing for them is Sunday School in most churches which is very short during church time. A few churches have youth groups but they are few and far between.
    I hope you have a wonderful day.
    Blessings.


    Hello Iris, How true is your writing today about our youth walking away from church. There is so much influence from the outside world on our youth today that the WANTS OUTRANK THE NEEDS and Christ falls out of line in their lives. The world has changed so much in it’s way of thinking and more and more is being accepted and put into law and governments are allowing it. Our Christian values are being put to the test of time. If we as people don’t do a compete turn around, we are on the road to destruction. Our moral values are there, but being ignored. So sad to see.
    Keep up the fight and keep spreading the GOOD NEWS of Christ to everyone. It was amazing when 911 occurred that the church filled up, but after 1 to 2 years they dropped in attendance and people went back to their old ways. It seemed to be a one-time CRUTCH and then vanished. My Mother’s expression was, “The world is going to Hell in a hand basket”. It’s sad how civilization has gone astray in having Christ first and foremost in their lives. Canada itself has gone away from it roots of this country being built on Christian values. We need to remember, ” Christ died for us. “.
    Well carry on doing the Lord’s work Iris.


    Thank you for your timely devotion for our times. Something that speaks to each of us no matter our age or circumstances. Grace and Peace.
    (Texas)


    So true, Thank you for your message.
    I was raised in the church but even this gray haired lady has left the church that she has been in for over 60 years. I would go to church wanting to be taught about the Scripture and it was becoming that they wanted to be entertained. I went on the internet and found a church 20 miles away from our area. This pastor goes through the scripture verse by verse. I learned so much.
    If I can’t make it to church, it comes live over the internet so I can just sit in church with them.


    We see it here too, Iris, and in the church I pastor as well.


    Iris
    I enjoy your write-ups so much but must disagree with your thoughts this time. The world is a bad place these days, and getting worse all the time but there are still many wonderful young people and lots that still believe. I used to attend the Presbyterian Church and had for many years but after my husband died I decided to go to a church that was closer and started going to another denomination. At first, I missed the hymns as there were a lot of choruses. There also isn’t so much repetition in the services. There are many young families and I have grown used to the change and quite like it. I do like seeing all the young people there. So don’t give up. Positive things are happening!
    (B.C.)

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