From a very young age I have fond memories of my grandmother looking me in the eye and saying to me with a big smile, “I can’t wait to see what you grow up to be!”
My grandma was a great Christian lady, and though she went home to be with the Lord before she was able to see who I would grow up to be, her words remained in my heart. I would find myself thinking, “Would grandma be proud of where my life is right now?”
I believe that as Christians our words carry great power and influence in others’ lives.
“For if you love those who love you, what reward have you?…And if you greet your brother only, what do you do more than others?” Matthew 5:47
Most of us do a good job of giving encouraging words to those who are easy to compliment, but I believe if we want to see the world around us change, we need to be people who can see the gold in someone who is used to being rejected.
At SCYM this is a very powerful tool for us in tearing down barriers and building relationships with kids, so we wanted to share it with you. It is simply speaking the truth about how God has created each young person, no matter how angry, indifferent, hyper, or sullen they may seem to us.
That young man with a swagger? He may have a wealth of leadership potential.
That girl who is withdrawn and quiet may be a great thinker, a great listener.
The young person blanketed with tattoos may be expressing God-given creativity that is bursting to come out.
What effect do you think it would have if we spoke about the gold in these young people, whether they are neighbors, grandchildren or nieces or nephews, or just someone we pass in the store? What if we smiled and said something like:
“You’re going to be a great leader someday”“I can tell that you really care about your friends”“God must have made you creative”“Did you know you are God’s
treasure?”Or like Grandma, “I can’t wait to see what you grow up to be!”
Simple words, yet powerful for young people who often only hear judgment and criticism. Words that reflect the heart of their Creator, and we can be His agents to communicate them. Let’s step over the line of fear together and see hopelessness crushed in children’s lives by the love of God!