Younger People and the Pandemic
As we work through the world Pandemic, we hear the serious discussions regarding what the world will look like “when it is over.” This discussion, as difficult and complex as it can be, is weighing greatly on the minds of the teens and those in their 20s who have been preparing for their life’s direction. We may falsely assume that our younger generations tech savvy abilities block the impact of the isolation and loss of person-to-person contact during this difficult time and beyond. We also may inadvertently reason that younger persons are fine and we don’t need to be concerned regarding their contribution to society now. They can, according to this reasoning, just wait around until they have more wisdom. Then we begin to search the Bible and see what can be found about younger people. Going back to early history, we begin to search out King David’s life. We find that as a youth his people were engaged in warfare with the Philistines and he, with God’s help, defeated Goliath. This changed the entire military direction of the battle. David did not wait until he was older to contribute...he took his stand early. Thus, we see that ignoring or sidelining a suggestion or offer of help must be weighed on merits rather than the age of the person. We also can see, walking through American military cemeteries, those young people within our life time who gave the full measure for our freedom. That sounds “grown up” to me. So, how do we interact with younger people today? First, we need to accept that various members in this age group want to know and interact with the other church members and friends. Maybe the interaction is different than older adults. However, they need to be a part of the solution. Second, we can help by encouraging them to let us know what they are thinking. Sometimes comfort and reassurance is stronger in just listening. Their concerns can reveal some deep thoughts and issues that older individuals may have overlooked or literally forgotten due to the passage of years. Third, we cannot generalize how the younger generation is doing based on talking to a few younger people. We can gain a perspective about younger thoughts. However, we must remember that each person is different and we handle adversity in a different manner. Finally, in our short list of things to consider...we should not bluff the teens and 20s generation. Hiding the truth can lead to distrust and separation into groups. There are, of course, other things to consider. However, let us all think of them and communicate with those who are younger. Continue to pray.