“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he/she is old he/she will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6
What a pleasure in life to be given or have the privilege to be able to pour God’s word, stories and experience into a child/youth’s life. It sometimes requires a lot of patience and perseverance but always it is well worth it.
I was challenged by Barbara Bolick, our ABC missionary to Chile. She is such a special lady to me. Two times last year, I heard Barbara share about her ministry to young girls. She teaches them about God and about virtues that they should have. I was slightly curious the first time but the second time, I was challenged to do something.
So, as of this year, we (some lady friends and I), have begun a Girls’ Life Lessons club. We started out with five Karen girls on a regular basis, but they shared what they were doing with their friends and now all of a sudden, we have close to 10-12 young ladies attending. What a blessing. We teach them how to cook—they didn’t even know how to turn on an oven or use a mixer. We taught them how to make enchilada’s and how to shop for ingredients and then they sold them for a profit so they could have Christmas money to buy presents. We have done many other things too, yet there is so much more to teach them. We also search Scripture about Bible virtues that they need to put into practice in their life. What a blast these girls are!
I’ve taken time to (chew the cud) and actually realized that the skills we are teaching these girls are not happening in the public school realm. So, we need to help them. My parents’ church in Kansas has an outreach to their boys. The older men train the young men how to do mechanical work, carpentry or simple household fixer-ups. This tends to open doors to other topics such as how they can become men after God’s own heart like King David.
We look at our surroundings and often we think, “boy, the world has changed so much.” But some things have never changed. People still have the need for love, acceptance and praise. Young people still need older people to share skills and stories. Which reminds me of the Scripture in Titus 2:2-8, which I am going to paraphrase hugely but, ‘Older women are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind and submissive to their own husbands… Likewise, urge the younger men to be self-controlled.’ God needs us to train young people while they are still growing in stature and their brains are still developing.
I thank God for this opportunity, now that I am older…to spend time with these young ladies and to pass on to them the skills that God gave me from my mother and grandmother. No matter how old we get, we still have something to share with the next generation of believers. Thank you, Barbara, for the challenge.
Prayer: Father, you have entrusted us with your children. Help us to use the gifts and talents we have, to instruct these young boys/girls on how they can grow closer to you and to prepare them to love and raise their own families in the future. To You be the glory! Amen.
First Baptist Church