Billy Graham once wrote, “In recent history, young people have been used both to save and to destroy nations. And today, all over the world, young people are filled with energy, eager to change their generation.”
We can be thankful that there are signs of youth revival in America such as a recent one at a high school football stadium in West Virginia where many students surrendered their hearts to Jesus. Ravi Zacharias and his team of apologists are witnessing hundreds of young people on college campuses hungry for answers, waiting for long periods of time after Ravi and others speak to ask their questions.
Sadly, though, many young people who grew up in Christian homes go off to the universities and find themselves rejecting the faith of their parents and their church. Perhaps some of it can be rightly blamed on the failure of Christians to live what they preach. Maybe it is part of a necessary finding of their own faith and not a willful rebellion. In too many cases, however, it is a conscious choice that will lead to bad things.
Apologist Stuart McAllister wrote, “At this moment in our cultural history, the dominant images and icons are those positioned as ‘against.’ Against what? Everything, it seems.” He called those under their spell “Rebels Without a Pause”. No doubt among them are some “Christian” young people who have decided to keep the Christian label but reject the teaching or change it to suit what they want to believe. They are the ones who are most apt to justify themselves by trying to “re-educate” everyone else around them. They will not be an influence for positive change unless and until they realize that they don’t have all the answers. Only Jesus does.
Paul’s admonition to Timothy was to not let anyone despise his youth. The only way for Timothy to do that was to follow the teachings of Paul (which all followed Scriptural truth) and not to rely on his own knowledge. (1 Timothy 6: 20-21 and Proverbs 3:5-6)
If we are among those who are crying out to God for our nation right now, shouldn’t we be praying that He will raise up a new generation of young people who are willing to become radical followers of Jesus? If we do this effectually and fervently, perhaps we will witness the greatest revival this nation has ever seen.