Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The Reality of God's Grace

This coming Sunday is Youth Sunday at our church. It's where our middle school and high school youth have the opportunity to lead the congregation in worship. I poured out prayers to God this morning to please make this a meaningful service for the congregation, for the message to get through loud and clear. That only His glory would shine through. The message? It's God's amazing grace for us; it's how God is always there for us to get us through those difficult times of temptation; it's how Jesus is our Shepherd. To me, the drama is powerful. As I read through the service yesterday, I got tears in my eyes, because of the reality of the message.

I pray it's not lost on the youth either. I feel like when I'm trying to tell them of the wonderful grace of God and the abundant life He offers, that sometimes their eyes glaze over or they get that look. Maybe we don't fully realize the significance of God's love for us until we've been through some difficult times. Not that these youth don't have problems, but maybe they haven't seen the harshness of the world, yet. I pray that when they do, they will remember these times in the Youth Group -- that they come to see and experience the reality of God's grace.

To me, that's the most difficult part of working with the youth - making God real and relevant to them. With adults, we know the times we've experienced God's grace, Jesus' love, the Spirit's guidance. In a world of me, me, and a little more of me, how do we point the way to Jesus?

As I was walking yesterday (and listening to my praise music) a visual image came to me. It was of all kinds of people with their candles lit. That one person at a time, one candle at a time, one light at a time, God shines through the darkness. And when we gather our lights together, it is a beacon that cannot be missed! So...I think that's my answer to making it relevant to the youth...I make it relevant in my life...I let God's light shine through day at a time - maybe even one moment at a time. That as we let God's light shine, the reality of His grace shines through - and maybe, we have more of an impact than we realize. To God be the glory!

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