Today’s younger generation is a very sensual generation. Many young people make vital choices and important decisions based on what they feel. The term YOLO (you only live once) is commonly being used to support sensuality in the sense of doing everything that makes you feel while you still can (alive).
Many students are dropping out of schools, young people are quitting jobs and taking up careless lifestyles based on emotions. The choices young people make are not in most cases the problem, but it is rather the basis on which they make these choices; feelings and emotions. Even the church is no stranger to this today. There is an increasing number of young people who quit jobs or drop out of education to enter full time ministry. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being in full time ministry, but there are people who become a part of it simply because of its appeal and not out of the calling of God, and would not head to advice or warning against this.
With a lot of young people’s worlds revolving around emotions and feelings, doing what is right in the sight of God (like obeying parents, mentors, guardians, pastors and other authority figures) is becoming not only uncommon but also very unpopular, and almost even strange.
Obedience is the only commandment I know with a promise attached to it; Exodus 20:12; Honor your mother and father that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you. Obedience is a subset of honor, you cannot honor without obeying, which is why we relate obedience to honor.
We young people find it hard to obey parents when, most of the time, we feel that things could be done differently than how they would have us do. We feel that our ways of doing things are different, more ‘new-age’ and up-to-date than our parents’. So we find it easier neglecting and ignoring what they require us to do; especially if it doesn’t make us feel a certain way; ‘cool’ maybe a good example.
We fail to recognize that they were once young people like us who went through the same things we go through today. What we go through is nothing new. It is said there is nothing new under the sun. They also, once in their lives, felt that there was a different, a more up-to-date or ‘cooler’ means of accomplishing things than their parents’ methods. Then time simply showed them that obedience was not only the easier and more convenient choice to make, but also that the blessing that came along with it was much more established than mere feelings.
Recalling Pastor Sahle’s teaching blessings are stored inside people’s hearts, not in their environments. Obedience is part of the key that God uses to unlock what is within us.
Obedience builds character and strength (faith) as we learn to obey and trust God. Families are unted, relationships strengthened, and intimacy with God heightened; all when we have the spirit of obedience.
If you’d ask a young person to sacrifice his/her life for the sake of his/her parents, in most cases they would do so without a second thought or flicker of doubt. But what good is it if that same person finds it hard obey his/her parents? The Bible says that obedience is better than sacrifice.
I’m learning a lot that the success in life doesn’t come from self-help books, or from attending a rally on prosperity, but from the blessing and fulfillment that comes from obeying parents. I know beyond every shadow of doubt that the man I am in God’s mind (and by extension my parent’s mind), is a man who is used by Him more than any other. And I want to be that man. I may want to be that man even more than I would want to be alive. But it is them who know how I become that man, they know what steps I need to take, what I need to learn, what qualities I need to develop, and which resources I have and need to exploit in order to become that man. So, why not simply do as they would have me do, for the sake of my own growth and becoming that man?
Everything, from the little chores (like leaving my room clean or doing the dishes), to the sacrifices they would have me make (like certain friendships and getting home early from friend’s or church in order to study or pray on time), are what build the desired qualities and the right character for me to be able to be more used by God.
My mentor once told me that God does not send rain where the ground has not been managed. This means that God does not do His side until we’ve done ours; preparation. Which means that we have to follow (obey) God’s directions and instructions first in order for Him to work in our lives.
Elijah first built an altar and drenches around the altar before God sent fire to consume the sacrifice. The widow Elisha visited first had to fetch empty containers to fill before God multiplied the oil. It is after we have obeyed, that God opens the floodgates of Heaven into our lives pouring out to us more than we need.
The motivation and the drive of life comes from obedience; the joy of the Lord is my strength. Bringing God joy by following His instructions and directions that come to us through His word is what is supposed to be the source of our motivation and drive in life. If you notice carefully, young people who are not motivated and lack drive and passion in their lives are mostly people who have trouble obeying. The Bible says do everything you do as if you were doing it unto God. Meaning, do everything in life as if everything you do came as an instruction from God and like He would have you do it. As you do this, you become more aware of how and what you do, make a conscious decision of pleasing God in everything you do. And as you please God, knowing you are pleasing Him brings fulfillment and motivation to further continue to please God (and parents). And this is meant to be the source of fulfillment and motivation