Week 34 “The next generation” Day 1
Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.
2 Tim. 2:1-7 You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others. Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs—he wants to please his commanding officer. Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor’s crown unless he competes according to the rules. The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops. Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.
It is common for people as they near the end of their working careers to begin to look for a way to “play” for a living. The end of a life of working and learning and producing is thought to begin a life of playing and resting and self-indulgence. It is not wrong to rest or to retire. It is wrong for an adult to play for a living. A young child’s life is largely about play. To see a child playing is sweet, natural, and beautiful. When a child does not have the opportunity to play, but is forced to “grow up” too fast it can stunt their development. An adult’s life need not be devoid of play and fun. In fact, a healthy life must have some times of enjoyment and play. But an adult’s life is not designed to be mostly about play and fun. As you grow into adulthood there are many investments that have been made into your life. For most people, other adults have given time, encouragement, training, and teaching to help them along the way. Adults have paid for your food, lodging, and other needs as you grew up because you were unable to do so yourself. Behind all of this investment in your life by other people, God was investing in you. Even if your childhood was difficult, the fact that you are reading this and are interested in spiritual things at all indicates that God has continued to pursue you and invest in you. The longer you live, the more God has invested in your life. The more he has invested the more he wants you to pass that investment on to others. “Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful” (1 Cor. 4:2). In 1 Timothy, Paul is speaking to his “son in the faith”, Timothy. He is investing in Timothy’s life and challenging Timothy to pass the investment on to others. Are you young? Be invested in. Seek it out from older Christ followers. Begin now to develop a lifelong perspective as a learner and as a mentor. You are the currently the “next” generation. If you live long enough, you will be required to help prepare the “next after next” generation. Embrace this opportunity and challenge. Are you “older”? Are you looking for a place to “sit down” or a way to serve yourself in your last years? No! You can rest some and you can play some, but you must not see your life as being about rest and play. You must invest in the next generation. If you are unprepared for that task, then you must become prepared. If you are unconnected from others who need your help, you must connect. If you believe the next generation does not want your investment, it is not because they are unwilling. It may be because you are unapproachable. If so, change. Learn to listen and understand so you can invest. Do what it takes to be faithful in your stewardship. Start today. See yourself as one whose life is to be about investing in others. Invest for the good of others, for the glory of God, and for the joy of being found faithful.
(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.