JESUS LOVED THE NEXT GENERATION
By Nicholas Costello
“While walking by the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And He said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Matthew 4:18-19 If you’ve grown up in church, you’ve probably imagined the disciples as wise, aged men wearing flowing robes. But, it is very likely that, with the exception of Peter, many of the disciples were just teenage boys. Christ demonstrated His love for the next generation by choosing young men to serve as the first leaders in the church. We see in these verses that Jesus met some of his future disciples by the sea where they worked, spoke to them in words that they understood, and even did the heavy lifting, saying, “I will make you…” In essence, you follow Me, and I’ll equip you to reach and raise another generation to follow Me. In the same way, as we follow Christ’s example, we will intentionally meet the next generation where they are, learn to connect with their language and culture, trusting Jesus to “make” them into His image. In other words, He’s asking for our availability while He equips us through His Spirit to engage and influence others to know Him.
Prayerfully identify someone in the next generation that you will invest your life into sharing Christ or discipling. Find a way this week to connect with that person, even in a small way.
Just because you are “the next generation” doesn’t mean you get a free pass. Nobody can reach your friends like you can. This week, find someone you can share the gospel with. Show someone the love of Christ in a practical way.
Our kids are the next generation! They can join in on reaching their peers. Encourage your children to build a My 5 List (if they haven’t already) of their friends and other kids their age. Begin to pray for that list and think of ways to engage those people.
Lord Jesus, thank You for the mission and opportunity to reach and raise the next generation. Equip me to accomplish this by Your Spirit.