Jim and I just returned from New York City where we attended Movement Day. Movement Day Greater Dallas will take place on January 22, 2015. I can honestly recommend that you “save the date” and plan to be there. The links above explain the purpose better than I could, but I would sum the time up in this way: The presence of God was welcomed, the power of God was evident and the heart of God was revealed. There is great hope for the days ahead, for those whose hope is in God and what he can accomplish through his people.
We visited the new 9/11 museum while we were in the city as well. The 9/11 Memorial Museum opened this year and walking the halls of that building was profound. Revisiting those terrifying moments from September 11, 2001 was a moving time. That day changed our nation and deeply impacted every generation, but especially the generation known as Millennials. Right now the Millennial generation ranges in age from 18 to 34.
I’ve just come home from watching my “Millennial” son, Craig, speak at chapel for DBU. He led the student body to understand the importance of experiencing the presence of God. They worshiped, learned, prayed and then left the chapel to return to their classes. They are a fascinating generation of Christians and I am excited about the passion for Christ I witness in their lives.
There were a lot of people from this age group that took a day of vacation from work and traveled to New York City on a rainy Thursday so they could attend Movement Day. In fact, one of my most vivid memories from the event came from the words of one of these Millennials. The question was asked about how older Christians could be helpful to this generation. The young woman’s response was full of wisdom. She said, “Treat us like you believe we will succeed.”
I’ve thought about those words many times. Why is it easier to notice the things we think are going wrong in the world? Does the evening news reflect the whole truth or just the truth that causes people to stop and watch the television for a few minutes? If the only knowledge I had came from the television, I would not be very hopeful. Walking the halls of the 9/11 Museum was a strong reminder of the power of evil. But those same halls were also a vivid lesson of all that is right with our world.
The Freedom Tower is impressive and reaches amazing heights. The two fountains that mark the foundations of the original Twin Towers are beautiful monuments to the people who died that day. And the generation that heard the news on 9/11, while sitting in their desks at school, has grown up and is entering the world, hoping to make it a better place. We need to treat them like we believe they will succeed. Spending time with them this past week has given me great hope.
I was humbled by their generous spirits and the obvious love they have for the Lord. Christian Millennials are not just believers, they are soldiers. They don’t have the ability to put one foot in the world and one foot in the church and keep their balance. Those two worlds are too far apart. I am going to treat these Christian young people like I believe they will succeed – because I do believe that.
God told Moses to tell the people to “Be holy, because I am holy.” Peter affirmed those words in his letter to the church as well. Holy is a high standard and the only worthy goal for a Christian. Many of our young people are striving for that goal, in spite of what it might cost them. Statistics and trends point to the fact that these young people will experience persecution for their faith unlike most of those in the older generations.
I want you all to join me in praying for the Christian Millennials. Pray the same prayer for them that Jesus prayed for his disciples: “I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world” (John 17:15-18). Now, take the time to hear Jesus pray that prayer for you as well.
Plan to join us for Movement Day Greater Dallas in January and see these Millennials at work for yourselves. They are going to be a powerful force for awakening in our world. Pray for them and treat them like you believe they will succeed. With God’s help, they will.