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Youth mature through affirmation

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Last week, we tried to encourage each other, particularly in the church, to raise God-fearing and not church-
fearing young people.

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We saw how, in the church, as in the world, young people are misunderstood and condemned and cursed instead of being loved and prayed for.

I am not surprised that many young people lose their balance under the heavy yoke of condemnation and self-condemnation and, as a result, some resort to thuggery and gangsterism.

Have you not seen young people leaving the church to mess their lives in the world because they are angry they were never appreciated?

Maybe you have not, but I have seen and spoken to many and that is why I am writing about this.

You see, young people grow and mature by affirmation, where they are appreciated and valued despite their shortcomings, they are quick to turn the corner of arrogance and submit.

What drives many away is the outright dishonouring by those responsible for their grooming.

I believe that most young people know when they are being naughty and out of line.

It is at that moment that our response to their naughtiness counts.

How do you respond?

Do you first condemn, curse and then try to affirm or you first affirm, love appreciate their strengths and then you rebuke?
Most people are quick to unleash words and dislike before they assure the young person.

These people are easy to get frustrated, angry and walk away.

I never said I am a saint here, but I am saying I have learnt a lot by walking with hurting young people trying to find out what they are thinking.

It has made me wiser.

They love to be affirmed and after all that is a major human need.

They love to be appreciated.

It is this need for appreciation that drives many of them into the hands of abusers in the world.

I am dreaming of a church community that is wise on the emotional needs of the young so as to protect them from falling into a destructive world.

I am looking for a church community that knows how to keep them no matter how much they mess up.

Let me show you a few things that we should be doing, particularly in this generation that is so anti-Christ.

Reassure the young people

When they mess up, what do you do at church?

Some of us will walk with them as long as they play Mr and Miss perfect, but the moment they mess up we throw them away.

We are quick to forget all their good contributions and we begin to see the little mistakes they have committed.

I think this exposes our selfishness.

Kindly remember all the good they have done.

Appreciate this, recognise their contribution.

They are not suddenly so bad, you have nothing to do with them.

While you rebuke the wrong, reassure them of your commitment to them.

I think this is what the church should be doing to this young generation.

Our commitment to them must be unconditional.

And yet, I have seen and heard of congregations that will parade the sin of the youth, condemn and encourage others to disassociate with them and call this discipline.

How sad.

I thought church was a refuge for the broken of the world.

Unfortunately, there are so many hurting people in the church and they are being hurt.

Affirmation builds relationships

If you want to build relationships with people, affirm, praise, recognise them and make them feel worthy and after all they are worthy.

Young people will always come around where they are loved and given space to be young people without feeling judged or condemned.

When you praise them, you build lasting relationships.

Sometimes, you even correct them by praising or affirming them.

Make them believe in themselves and believe they are better and can do better.

Instead of running them down, show them their stronger side so they can overcome their weaknesses.

In the world, they manipulate young people by building relationships based on wrong foundations.

They relate around alcohol, idolatry, sex and other stupid things, but they stick together.

Church people need to do more.

Do you know that you can change a young person’s course of life by just affirming and recognising their value?

Do you know that by accepting a rejected person, they can be restored?

Beloved, love is medicine and it is powerful.

Those, who chose to walk in love have chosen to walk in power and in life transformation.

Young people in this generation are desperate, afraid, dejected and vulnerable.

All they need is a church that loves, a church that accepts as Christ accepted without judging and condemning.

When you love them and appreciate them, they are able to give you constructive feedback even about their own lives.

They begin to open up and allow you to see their hearts and only then can you sow hope and faith.

I pray that adults in the church will turn from being condemners of the young into the builders of young dreams.
Building by love and acceptance and not by comparison.

This generation will never be like the past generation.

We better accept that quickly for our good.

When they get pregnant at church, do not chase them, love them and inspire them towards good.

When they make someone pregnant, do not throw them out, restore them.

When they do the silly things the youth do, understand they are growing up.

They cannot skip the stages of life.

Build this young generation by affirming, loving and encouraging them.

Allow them to fall and rise.

Your duty is to pick them up, pray them up and inspire them.

Make them understand they can make it.

We have created a platform called Generation Transform aimed at empowering the youth through sound, Christ-centred
life coaching in relationships and influential living. All are welcome.

For more, visit our online bookstore on www.kiltonmoyoinspirations.com

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