Jesus Is The Hope For Our Next Generation

Jesus is The Hope for Our Next Generation
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I was watching a football game recently, and I noticed that after the game was over, and all the players, the fans, and the friends, had left, the players still had to leave the field and face larger challenges off the field. The challenges these young people left to address were the trials of life that we see described in the book of Daniel. We see Daniel and his friends at the teenage stage of their lives. They had been taken from their homes and their families and their cultures. They were put into the equivalent of today’s university with some of the brightest minds in the world at that time. Through God’s grace, these young men were placed in leadership positions of an entire nation. It was like waking up one day and being instant teenage celebrities. 

Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were given every incentive to turn their backs on their culture, and their God, even to the point that their names were changed to honor the Babylonian’s gods. But Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were determined that they were going to honor God in both their personal and public lives. The most well-known example of their integrity is the story of the “Fiery Furnace”. Daniel 3:16-18 (KJV) “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.”

These young men were most concerned about their relationship with God. They loved God so much that nothing was more valuable, even life itself. Love, in its purest form, isn’t just about performance or need, it even goes beyond our shortcomings. A good friend and colleague Pastor Horace Thompson put it this way “My relationship with God is the most valuable thing I have; it guides me into becoming a Christ-like human being that reflects the love and image of God”. Our love for God shouldn’t be merely for His actions but for who He is. Shadrack Meshack and Abenego Knew God to be faithful and dependable. They had unwavering faith that God would protect them from the fiery furnace and He did. Daniel 3:24-25 (KJV) “Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonied, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.”

The key to success for the next generation is hope in Jesus Christ. Jesus demonstrated this hope throughout His life but especially by his habit of always trusting in God. Our hope comes from our relationship with Him. Young people today are world changers. However, the rest of us need to demonstrate the love of Jesus to them. We need to share with them that God is real, and that God is speaking to each of us. God desires a personal relationship with each of us. And the good part is that we don’t have to go looking for God, He already came looking for us in the person of Jesus Christ. Romans 5:8 (NIV) “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

This young lady, Myrna Summers said it quite well in her time “God Gave Me a Song”
 https://youtu.be/6k50g-wOBXU?si=Z1rupy2DJSz4HrwN

 

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Pastors Willie and Rochelle McIntosh

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