I met Paul, Steve, and Tom when they were each about 14 years old—just a trio of guys who weren’t interested in much except basketball. As their coach and English teacher, I taught them what I could about those two things—and about how to live the Christian life.
We all have opportunities like that. Even if we are not teachers by occupation, we all influence younger people. We can strive to be a good example, to encourage, to motivate, to teach, to influence for godliness.
Scripture suggests how important this is. The apostle Paul took the youthful John Mark with him on his missionary journey (Acts 12:25). And Titus 2:4 calls for older women to teach “young women to love their husbands.”
If we want to transfer our legacy of faith to the next generation, we must take it upon ourselves to instruct the young people in our lives—one person at a time.
Today, many years after we met, Paul, Steve, and Tom are all married and living for the Lord, passing their faith along to a new generation—including their own 12 children. What a thrill to have had a part in guiding their lives!
Look around. There are young people you can help. Reach out and teach them how to live for the Lord.
Putting It Into Practice
Do you know a young person you can influence?
How can you encourage him or her to live for God
and to share the gospel with others?
When we teach young people, we're not just spending time, we're investing it.