Magic wands and bow and arrows and awesomeness.
If you told it to me like it was, I pretty much took your word for it. If you said, “When you grow up, you will understand,” I might scoff at your patronizing tone, but I pretty much would bow to your authority. I am a Generation X guy with a keen sense of 80’s movies, a history of skateboarding and a wide eyed ignorant approach to modern technology.
So, um, what about kids these days?
The Generation Xer in me was caught in a modern-meets-post-modern world. I was at peace with universal truths, but I loved experiences. I could be taught abstract ideas but I really sunk my teeth into interactive learning.
My generation is unique in this way. The young adult (Millenials) of today and the newer unnamed generation of young adolescents…not so much.
Experience is everything. Truth still exists outside the bounds of one’s own interpretation…for most. But encountering deep seeded truth in someone is profound. All young people are not relativistic idiots (contrary to modern advertising). My experience in youth ministry has taught me to fall in love with the pursuit of truth most adolescents exhibit today.
In short, we simple do not see the depth of a person the way we may have once supposed. The “moment” is more to a mind that hungers to know it origins, its relevance and its impact. Where my adolescence might be best illustrated in Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, the modern teen celebrates the rugged independence of Katniss from Hunger Games or the underdog triumph of Harry Potter.
Young people are a deep treasure of more than meets the eye. They long to be known because in the knowing is a relational process of growing. The mantra of my generation might be, “I get it.” Where a millennial might cry out, “…there is more.”
Seek more in our young people today. Minister well to these incredible young hearts. Their treasure and true impact on our faith lives is really yet to come in its fullness. The influence of the young disciple on community and worship is really only beginning to unfold. Brace yourself for a healthy shakedown in the way we learn and experience the faith.
I am happy to be along for the ride.