Margaret (my wife) and I have been very encouraged that several younger men and women have decided to become part of our children’s lives. All of these young people are in their twenties, and they have each given up time to spend with our children on their own. These people are not part of a youth program. They are not church staff. They are not youth pastors or youth ministers. Yet, they believe that God wants them to become involved in the lives of younger believers and non-believers in order to disciple them toward maturity in Jesus Christ.
I want to take this opportunity to share some of the ways that these young men and women are taking part in the lives of our children. Hopefully, this will spur others own toward making disciples of Jesus Christ.
Last Friday, my daughter turned 10. She had a spend-the-night birthday party with several girls her age. She also invited a “twenty-something” young lady. We were pleasantly surprised and thankful when this young lady appeared at the door to watch a movie and share cake and ice cream with these girls! Also, to top things off, she has invited our daughter and another young girl to spend the night with her. Our daughter is very excited, and we are excited that our daughter is able to spend time with a godly young woman.
Last Sunday, we went to lunch with some friends. Unfortunately, the restaurant could not seat us all together, so we would have to sit at different tables. The restaurant had tables ready for part of our group, but the remainder would have to wait for a later table. Our family and another family agreed to wait for a later table. However, two “twenty-somethings” young men asked if they could wait for a later table and sit with my son and the other family’s son who is about the same age as my son. We were so excited that these two men would give up their table for a chance to spend more time with our sons!
Monday afternoon, these “twenty-something” young people invited all of the children to a “slip-and-slide” afternoon. They broke out the slip-and-slide, made hot dogs, had a Bible study, and made pizzas. They did this because they wanted to be part of the lives of these children. They planned everything themselves and provided everything that was necessary. (This is not the first time that these “twenty-somethings” have planned something in order to spend time with those who are even younger than them. And, I don’t think this will be the last time they do something like this.)
These young people are serious about serving others. They recognize that God has called them to make disciples, and they are trying to live as disciple-makers by spending time with others. They all have jobs. They all take college or seminary classes. Yet, they believe this type of interactions is so important that they are willing to give up their free time. They do not have to be urged to do this. They do not have to be reminded. They recognize that they are servants of their Master, and they take their service seriously. They are an inspiration to me!