When asked what I do for a living, I have not yet been slammed for telling of my ministerial profession, it is usually followed with a distant interest that allows my questionner to fulfil their intrigue.
Reference: v.9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me.” (NIV Bible)
Explore: SBS just screened a show in Australia called mY Generation. This was a documentary about how the Y Generation (born between 1980 and the mid 90’s) perceive the world. In a series of six, the first show looked at Y Generation’s view on religion and spirituality. This was very interesting and had every current minister clambering for their video recorder! As I have experienced, there is a great openness to religion from Gen Y. Not often will you be put down for what you believe, it is appreciated by others but they feel no pressure to own it themselves. When asked what I do for a living, I have not yet been slammed for telling of my ministerial profession, it is usually followed with a distant interest that allows my questionner to fulfil their intrigue.
Application: So where is our persecution that Jesus spoke so openly about? I often wonder whether I am putting myself on the line enough because I don’t experience persecution very often. Sure enough, this is from my perspective, sitting in a middle-class home in Australia. I know that there is still plenty of religious persecution going on to many of our brothers and sisters all over the world. In Australia, the challenge seems to be: how do we encourage people to explore God more deeply when they just see him as one of the many options before them?
It may sound a little trite but the verse that continues to resound in my head is: ‘By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.’ (John 13.35) And this is often where Christians fail and give no encouragement to others to explore the depth of God’s love. We are quick to criticise and slow to forgive. It is by our actions that people will notice the difference, and yet we are often ‘out-loved’ by others who say they don’t believe in anything! It is our daily challenge to show people our commitment to Christ by our actions of love. True love will turn heads.
Prayer: Lord, you showed the most sacrificial action of love and people are still talking about it 2000 years later. May we continue to be inspired by your life so we can declare your name in our world today. Amen.
How do you think this generation views God? What is an effective form of evangelism in our world today?
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This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.