Today I want to address all leaders in our culture that have influence and leverage of the next generation. Our generation has been known to view the next generation as lazy, unmotivated, apathetic, etc. My challenge to parents, student pastors, teachers, coaches, leaders of the next generation is simple: challenge them. Give them something to strive towards. In the everyone gets a trophy culture what if we actually raised the bar for them and made them work towards success rather than handing it to them on a platter? What if we (the leaders) stopped whining about the problems of the next generation and began being proactive in addressing them head on? What if one of the biggest issues of the next generation is actually the way that we are leading them?
Give this some serious thought for a second. What if I saw something in my children that I detested? After seeing that “thing” come out in their lives, what if all I did was blog about it? Talk to my friends about how much I hated seeing that issue come about? What if all I did was talk to everyone else on the planet except my children? Even in conversing with them, what if I never gave them a game plan and a challenge to succeed? What if I simply sat by on the sidelines and watched them drown in their inabilities? You would call me a bad parent. Catching my point?
I think many of the leaders of the next generation have done exactly what I’ve described above. We need to stop talking about the issues of the next generation and start talking to the next generation with expectancy. Raise the bar. Expect more. Don’t let them settle for less. Do it with grace.Abigail Van Buren once said, “If you want children to keep their feet on the ground, put some responsibilities on their shoulders.” I am afraid that we have ignored this simple wisdom of the past, and we’ve produced children that are but a shadow of what they could be. – Tim Elmore