Youth for the Truth

chris-at-yfc-025.jpgI began the New Year by ministering to over 1200 young people at the National Youth Festival in Vizag. When I gave the invitation to commit to serve Christ whatever the cost and wherever the Spirit leads, over 200 youth came forward to dedicate themselves. The next week, I conducted Operation Mobilization (OM) leaders’ training where 40 women and men prayed a three-fold prayer I have been praying daily the last 15 years: “Lord, keep me clean today. Use me for your glory. Help me to finish well.”

youthfortruth.JPGDorothy has an effective ministry among the youth in colleges and business, who are open to know Christ. Our motto in ministry is not merely to see youth for who they are, but what they can become by the grace of God. This is how we were mentored! Of course, while older Christians should not look down on the younger, the youth must also take personal responsibility and persevere in living out the truth (1Tim 4:12). Paul capitalized on this truth when he invested in young Timothy in notable ways that made him a successful minister (1Tim. 6:11).

First, Timothy was the son of a godly woman named Eunice who had communicated to him the importance of a deep faith in Jesus Christ. Such confidence in God is essential for youth to remain steadfast in a disorienting world. The influence of a godly home is foundational and formative in building moral values in youth.

Second, Paul saw in Timothy a saint of a good witness. Local believers spoke well of his character and conduct. This was certainly due to Timothy’s association with and the influence of the local Church on him. Because of his proven character, Paul wanted Timothy and took him on his missionary team workforce (Acts 16:1-3).

Third, both on the domestic and social levels, there was a supreme factor that transformed Timothy. He was a student of God’s Word. From childhood he had known the Holy Scriptures. Because the Bible is God’s inspired word, it is reliable, profitable, and able to show youth their need for salvation and point them to Christ, the only one who can offer it (2 Tim. 3:15).

In all this, there is a critical question for missions: what about those young people who have not had a “Christian” upbringing and the privilege of been exposed to biblical truth and values? For those of us who do know the truth and love our youth, our mission is then to be that godly influence to see them come to Christ and become His followers. We must make every effort to first understand their essential needs and develop their potential. Like Paul (Acts 7:58), we must not forget that we too were once young and looked for proper models to emulate. Let us encourage them, doing whatever it takes to see our youth walk in God’s Way, being transformed by the Truth, and finding real Life in all its abundance!

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