Sacred Spaces 367– Dear Teenager

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Sacred Spaces 367– Dear Teenager
14 February 2013

(I have worked with teenagers for about 11 years now.  I remember when I started at age 20; what a snot-nosed punk I was.  Thank goodness Jesus saved me from that folly.  Now a few years on, I still find I am learning; and you know what I still find teenagers a mystery.  They are complex.  They are simple.  Recently I thought of how I just want my teenagers to know the love of God, and how that would change everything for them.  I’m still learning that truth too.)  In response to my thoughts I wrote this:

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Dear Teenager,

I really do enjoy writing.  I write at least two blogs a week.  And yet I find that I am at a loss of words now, to capture the truth of how much God loves you; and yet I will humbly type on, hoping that you hear and more than that: you would feel the love of God; that is my intention behind these words.

God loves you

I looked out at you during our usual Friday night and Sunday morning gatherings this past week and my heart just broke.  Well, it more yearned and longed for you to know more of the God I have to know over my years of following Jesus.

I realise a lot of you are half my age, even younger than that.
I realise too that as a teenager now days, there is a lot more in your world that you have to deal with.
I realise you are busy, and I hope that you will have a bit of time to read this.

I want to tell you, that you don’t need to be what schools and society are trying to mould you into.
Yes, education is good.  Yes, reputation is a good thing to keep in check.

But seriously it’s okay to not have life figured out.  By the time you reach matric, at aged 17 or 18, you seriously don’t need to know what you gonna do with your life or what you need to study?

I want to tell you, that sometimes churches may push and tell you, that you have to “be good.”
Rubbish!  Jesus has other ideas.  In one of the books in the bible it says that he/ she who believes in Jesus, has the right to be called children of God.

I want to ask you, have you thought about that?  What does it mean to be a child of God?
Not just a product of your school
Not just a member in society
Not just a cog in some larger wheel

You are noticed.  You have a purpose.
You are loved so much more than you understand
You have a profound creativity in your core
Your heart is made to collide with grace
Your life is in the hands and mind of a Creator.

At this point I want to beg you:
Please slow down!

Success is not about being super busy.
I fear that in being so busy, you won’t have time to listen to the depths of your heart.  What does that mean, you may ask?

Well your heart beats.  Who started that beat?
Our loving God did.  Life begins from His breath.  Life, fun, giving love away is God’s idea.

Don’t forget that!

I would love you to stop and listen to God; hear what He says.
Notice what He is doing in the world.  Not just your world; but the world around you too.

I was born into a Christian home; I took my faith seriously at aged 16.
Do ask me, about my experiences of God.  We could do that over coffee.  We could do that at youth, we could do that on Sundays at church.

My life is packed with stories of how I have seen God move in my life.  I really genuinely (yes, those words have the same meaning) felt God’s love.

Don’t get me wrong, I have had times when God has confused me.  I have felt very lonely. I don’t understand some things in life.

Yet, I am utterly convinced of God’s love and hand in my life.
And I know you can experience and know that too.  I promise.
You won’t be excluded by Him.

I have been on a church camp where I felt a gentle breeze on me and just knew God was touching my life.
I have felt my heart burst in gratitude and worship when I have seen God’s beauty in creation.
I have seen how God has set free many people that I have met in my life so far.

I want you to see yourself in the eyes of God.

I could write a lot more; however that’s not the point.
I vow here with these words that I will remind you and show you the love of God.

My simple prayer for you often will be: “God, show them your love.”

Love Came Down, and rescued us…
Love Darrel

I love you
Is what He says to you and me?
What a difference it would make
If we lived like
We believed that

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