that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh;
your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
your old men shall dream dreams,
and your young men shall see visions.
Even on the male and female servants
in those days I will pour out my Spirit.”
It’s been said by numerous authors, ethnographers, and sociologists that teens in the world’s urban centers have more in common with each other than with older generations in their own cultures. Whether we call it globalization or “McDonaldization”, inexpensive, accessible media has helped advance an emerging youth worldview which is very different from previous generations. This has resulted in what some see as a growing worldwide, generational divide. People of God, we cannot allow that divide to partition the Church.
The body of Christ needs every part for maximum health. This includes the unique ways that God has placed young and old, and men and women in the Church. Younger leaders need the wisdom, encouragement, experience, spiritual parenting, and love of those who are older leaders. At the same time, older leaders need the energy, creativity, passion, and love of those who are younger. Older leaders should not be quick to dismiss the lack of experience or naiveté of younger leaders. Conversely, younger leaders should not disregard the experience and counsel of older leaders. Likewise, men and women, because of the Gospel, work together in partnership for the glory of Christ.
Leadership is from God; not a “right” but a gift to be stewarded. Positions of service are often referred to in the New Testament as “graces.” Regardless of the person, we must remember that we are all reliant on God’s grace, especially in our positions of service. And remember that these graces are all given for the building up of the Church!
Therefore, let’s praise God for the diversity in the body of Christ. We praise Him for the differences in generations, and between men and women, knowing that He desires to use those differences to advance his glory and his Kingdom. As young and old, male and female, let’s encourage one another and speak a word of blessing over each other. Let’s each intentionally seek to partner with leaders who are not like us. Our lives and ministries will be enriched, and God will be glorified by the unity of his people.
This blog is a part of the Lausanne Global Prayer Focus. We invite you to journey with The Lausanne Movement in prayer throughout the month of May. This journey will be a personal one, and a collective one. It will be focused on the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, his good news for all people.
In week 4, we are focusing on Our Partnership in the Gospel. Download a prayer guide for the week, or visit www.lausanne.org/pray to access the new content daily. You may also enter your email on this page to be sent a weekly email reminder with the new prayer content each week of May. Be sure to select “Prayer” as a Topic Interest.