Fresh Word Friday–On Saturday!

I said I would keep my promises, I did NOT say, I would always be on time!
No woman in her right mind would promise that!
I spent my day yesterday going from an early morning AMAZING conference keynote speech to running to catch the “Super Shuttle to BWI Airport, to waiting in line for over an hour to get through security…it was 9/11 after all! God has truly worked miracles in my life in the area of flying! I arrived home at around 5pm, went to dinner with my honey then came home and crashed in front of a movie with him!
Stay with me this week for secrets about a new movie coming out this Fall that I got a “hot off the press” copy of to watch in my pajamas!

So….Fresh Word Friday is here on Saturday but is VERY FRESH non-the-less.
The Word on my heart is GRACE!!!!! A yummy word if I must say so myself!
God’s Word has so much to say on this topic I could not even begin to do it justice in a quick blog post but here are just a few:

And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him.

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another.

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

Romans 3:24
We are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

Romans 5:2
through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.

Romans 11:6
And if by grace, then it is no longer by works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.

OK….one more……

2 Corinthians 1:2
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

I always LOVE and NEED this word in my life. However, the word “Grace” has been jumping around in my heart like fresh popped popcorn since yesterday morning after listening to the stirring keynote speech of Author David Kinnaman. (David is the guy in the black shirt in the middle/ my son Andy is listening intently on the right side of the photo beside the woman in the white jacket)

I had the great privilege of sitting in a small group with David’s Dad, Gary, just last month. I can easily the see that the passion apple does not fall far from the tree in this family.

David is a brilliant young man, just barely into his 30’s and is President of the Barna Group. His book “Unchristian” (Baker Books; 2007) is a study of the thoughts and perspectives of the new generation regarding their faith verses the faith of their parents and grandparents.

I have always been interested in this topic and read the book soon after it released. I enjoyed it then but hearing David deliver the valuable information about what it will take for this generation to influence then next generation for Christ was nothing less than captivating.

Here a some of the words The Barna Group has found that young Christians use to define “Older” Christians:
Out of Touch
Anti Sinner
Too Political
Can you say OOOUUUCCCH!!!!

As I listened to David the light-bulbs going off in my head could have been bright enough to light up that baseball thingy stadium behind the hotel!

I think it is called “Camden Yards”—Home of the Baltimore Orioles

I have had a few discussions with some young Christian Authors and Speakers over the past few months about this very topic as I have made some surprising observations about the response of young women to my speaking engagements over the past 2 years. I had felt that they were drawn to me for some reasons that I have been mystified by. David spoke some words yesterday that I have actually spoken myself as I have mentally chewed on this topic.

David classified the current young adult generation as the “Grace Generation”! I just about fell off my chair as I have used those exact words! I LOVE it when God confirms something in my heart that I have felt He was showing me!

I could truly go on and on about this important truth from so many key directions but this is a POST, not a speech or a book (It is long enough as it is)!!
I want to restate 6 points that David made that we all MUST CONSIDER with regards to our young adult children, grand children and teen outreach ministries. This is something that I do every day as the leader of a crisis pregnancy center and that we all do in some fashion or another!!
These points are critical as we attempt to present BIBLICAL social values, truths and challenges to the next generation.

1) LISTEN to them!!!!
They want to be heard. They need to be heard. We can not just TELL young people what to believe, we must listen to what THEY believe so that we can then….

2) Earn the right to be heard!
We can not just blast off our political, social and spiritual opinions or even facts, without earning the right to be heard by these young adults.
They need to know we care before they care what we think.

3) Be Transparent!!!
I think this might be why young women who come to my keynotes and events seem to be drawn to me. I tell them the truth about my past mess-ups!! So often women in Christian leadership tell me of a past abortion (or abortions) but tell me they just can not bring themselves to tell their children, or their Bible study classes or anyone for that matter. They are still being held back by the old ways of keeping your dirty laundry in laundry room. My response is that we have to tell so that our daughters and our granddaughters the truth about our personal failures and the Grace of God so that they do not BUY THE SAME LIEs that we bought!!! So that they do not fall into the same traps!
That is just my opinion but research appears to agree so don’t get mad at me!!

Every woman I know who has shared her abortion story with her children and family has found them to completely embrace her in love and offer her GRACE!! That is how they are!

4) Allow them to participate and offer input and leadership into your ministry!
We must be passing the torch of our faith to the next Generation but be willing to sometimes do it their way!! We need to engage, equip and enlist the next generation! (Another process I am walking out every day, PTL!!!)

5) Involve their peers.
This generation listens to their peers!! They turn to them for advice. They confide in them. They follow one anothers lead. Involve the peers of your children in your life, your ministry direction and your plans!

6) Pray, Pray, Pray!!!
David’s speech reminded me that I must pray MORE!! Pray for the next generation of Christians. Pray for my college daughter’s friends, the Christian environment that she is immersed in and PRAY that she and her peers will embrace faith!! Their way!

It is the day of the “Grace Generation”.
Somehow, I think God knows about them!!

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  1. Just got this book for my birthday! I am very intrigued by the subject matter and look forward to delving in.

    Oh, and as for the "pray, pray, pray" part? Know that I'm doing that, harder and more fervently than you know. I'll be in touch.


  2. Sweet Melinda,
    You faithful girl you!! Who but a BFF would read this diatribe all the way to the end!! You sweetheart!

  3. I LOVE this book. It literally jumped off the bookshelf at me in Books A Million. Every Christian should read it to gain a better understanding of how we are perceived by the unchurched. It's pretty eye-opening and more than a little uncomfortable. Ouch is right!! The good news is we can do something about changing those perceptions if we want to. Great post!!

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