I have spent quite a bit of time recently dealing with people of all ages and all generations. It is interesting to note that the eldest members of our society enjoy face to face communication while the younger members, especially in the corporate world, prefer text messaging or email. Many times I see a disconnect between people on the same corporate teams as they compete with one another or try to protect themselves from harm by memorializing every word they say in email messages to co-workers with the hope of making sure they have permanent job security.
Unfortunately, I also know a number of people who have lost their jobs due to the abnormal need to receive constant reinforcement about the positive impact they are having on the businesses they are employed by. Older workers tend to consider their paychecks reward enough while that isn’t enough for our younger members of society. There are just too many differences in the ways that people think.
One of the things that is almost lost today is the idea of sitting down and having Sunday dinner together. Back in the day when I was a little guy, Sunday evenings were sacred and there wasn’t a Sunday that passed without the family getting together at Grandma and Grandpa’s house to eat together and perfect the lively art of dinnertime conversation. While the idea of talking to one another is quickly giving way to more electronic forms of connecting, we could still learn quite a bit about patience and growing deep relationships from the diminishing group of Americans who served in WWII and lived through the depression.
The point of all this is that most of us are the most comfortable with people who enjoy similar types of communication to ourselves. But God challenges us to reach out and embrace all generations in the hope of being mentored by our older folks and then turning around to help those coming up behind us. In my own life, I remember being taught by my grandfather and Dad – now I am the grandfather. I guess that it is the circle of life.
The verse for this evening highlights the fact that God expects us to transmit His word to the younger folks who are coming up behind us. We are told by the psalmist, in Psalm 71:18, “Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, O God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come.” My encouragement tonight is that God wants us to reach out, respect and interact with all His people. My prayer is that you will reach out, even if it is outside your comfort zone and make sure that you do everything you can to reach across the ages so that everyone knows the good news of Jesus Christ. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…