This week, Rachel Held Evans has been talking about how changes in faith affect relationships. Yesterday, her father wrote a guest post on the subject that was excellent. Basically, it was to parents, telling them how to handle the fact that their children may be rejecting views they’ve held dear their entire lives. One quote jumped off the page at me as I was reading: “I have learned so much from my two daughters who see and experience a different world than I do.”
The key point in that quote is that young people “see and experience a different world” than us older folks. Due to technology and their embrace of it, their world is shrinking more and more every day. When we were their age, communication with people more than a few miles away either took several days (snail mail) or cost extra money (long distance phone calls); they have instant access to people across the globe at their finger tips. When we their age, travel further than one or two states beyond that of our birth was rare and was usually a family vacation; they’re traveling to other countries, many times on mission trips to depressed or ruined areas. When we were their age, we may have had our doubts about faith and religion, but we sure as hell didn’t voice them; they’re constantly questioning and testing their faith and looking for better ways to live it out. Their view of this world and their place in it is substantially different from ours and, while it may be scary as hell, there’s a lot we can learn from it.
What can we learn from our children? I’ll post a few facebook statuses and let you see for yourself:
- “if we could only love the world like we’ve been loved, then all the world would know what love is really made of.” (from the song “The Revolution” by Tree63)
- “you profess to be a christian but you don`t love like god says to love…. so are you really a christian?”
- “’now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things unseen.” – hebrews 11:1
- “Even the darkest night has bright, shining morning; even the longest day must end; even the fiercest battle will be won…this too shall pass.”
- ”Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it.” – J. K. Rowling
- “✌˙❤し❤˙✌ just spreadin’ the peace and love!”
As the father of two young extremely intelligent young women, leader of a church youth group that astounds me with their depth and supervisor to some smart hard-working young men and women, I tell myself every day that I don’t have all the answers, that some days I’m not even sure where to look for them; that I will never stop learning and that learning can come from unexpected quarters; that knowing something is one thing and putting it into practice is a different animal entirely. And, that believing anything else is ignorance and arrogance personified.