Last night at the Festival of Light conference, Shirley Brownhill (director of YWAM Perth) was speaking about the role of youth in God’s restoration plan.
She shared this amazing thought: that our young people are not just our future, they are both our present and our future!
Indeed, God has always used young people for His purposes! Samuel heard from the Lord when he was 5; David was 16 when he slayed Goliath; Mary was a teenager when she was chosen to bear the Son of God; Josiah was 8 when he reformed a nation.
We often so easily slip into a mindset of thinking that young people only possess passion and enthusiasm which still needs to be tempered by the wisdom that comes from age and experience. This may be so in the natural – but if we think this, we ignore clear biblical examples of how God can use young people, even children, to accomplish His purposes and plans. Indeed, God sees young people as his present mission force.
Case in point: I have had the privilege of serving in a worship ministry full of amazing young people. My worship director at Faith Community Church is only 23 years old. But he is functioning at a level well beyond his age (if we are to use age as a yardstick).
Over the last few months, I have seen him step up to the role of worship director, envisioning our worship team of over 40 people; forging unity amongst us and inculcating godly values. I have watched as he mobilised a team of musicians from different churches to facilitate worship at Festival of Light. I was 34 years old before I started doing the things that he has been doing.
It would be wrong to think that perhaps God is accelerating his agenda for young people. In fact, as Shirley Brownhill shared, He has been using young people throughout Biblical and church history! Maybe it’s time for us to put aside our prejudices and open our eyes to what God is doing in his restoration plan!