I realize that I am not progressing very fast on this Titus 2 study. Because my family comes first, I try to only write once a week--on a quiet Sunday afternoon when everyone is resting. However, during the week things tend to come up, prompting me to write about something other than that which I previously planned. This is such a time.
Yesterday my husband and four oldest children went to New York. Actually, they left Friday morning to go down to Mount Vision, a little place near Cooperstown, NY. There they attended a youth conference with the theme of "Standing in the Gap." My husband was asked to preach one of the messages, so our whole church youth group went. From what I hear, it was fantastic.
This conference was organized by three of the pastor's children: Nate, Jonathan, and Esther Ellis. (Their dad has a blog, too, but this post is about young persons ;) ) This in itself spoke to my heart, that three young persons organized a Bible conference for the encouragement and edification of other young persons. I've only actually met Nate and their dad. They came up for my husband's ordination a few months ago, and Nate spoke at our youth snow camp. But I've heard how the Lord dealt with Jonathan, who was once a rebellious preacher's kid.
And today I took a look at Esther's blog. Here's a quote (and remember, we're talking here about someone who still has "teen" at the end of her age):
I'm just so excited about what the Lord has been doing in my own life. Physical and non-physical things that I thought I would never let go of, just all the sudden became meaningless. God convicted me to throw away a lot of things in my life. But He's reminding me I can't stop there and think that is good enough. And for some reason, He keeps bringing Enoch into my mind. Its such a good reminder..let me tell you. Its very liberating when you get rid of things.
I can echo that, but I'll save that for another post when we get back to Titus 2. For now, however, let me just say that when I see a young woman like Esther striving to go "whole hog" for God, THAT encourages me. It makes me look at my own children in a whole new light.
When I see three young persons organize a youth conference, and hear four other young persons (my own) interrupt each other to tell me all about it literally from the moment they step inside the door late on a Saturday night (actually one started talking as soon as she stepped onto the porch, but we'll let her remain nameless), THAT encourages me.
When I hear a certain young man in our church pray for God to use him in the salvation of his friends, THAT encourages me.
When I heard what God did for Jonathan Ellis (and I hope he posts his testimony soon!), THAT encourages me.
When I heard Nate Ellis join other men in prayer as they laid hands on my husband at his ordination service, THAT encouraged me. It even encouraged me when I heard that Nate wouldn't let our young persons sit on nice comfortable couches when he preached to them at snow camp last March, because I knew he wanted them to hear the Word without falling asleep.
I know that a lot happened at that youth conference that I have only begun to hear about. Other young persons were there that I don't know, who also want to go for God. They want to be the ones who stand in the gap. They want God to use them in mighty ways. THAT encourages me.
When I see God working in our youth, I know there's hope for the rest of us. Some of the greatest revivals started with young persons. God grant that again, NOW, in 2006.
Standing in the gap,