1 Chronicles: The Next Generation (@JHOsborn)

There’s a lot that happens in 1 Chronicles! And I’ve read a lot from fellow #DigiDisciples about knowing where we come from; a sense of belonging is crucial to our sense of self; the importance of knowing whose shoulders we stand on is not to be underestimated.

Solomon knew what it was like to stand on the shoulders of a great leader.  His Dad was one of the greatest, not least because it appears he realises when it is time to hand over. It takes courage to hand things over to the next generation, and sometimes a direct word from God as David had through Nathan.

calves

We heard from Tony Campolo this week about a decision to close down a ministry he set up 40 years ago. Saying:

“Too often, we old guys hang on too long and steal the spotlight from the new, bright, shining stars emerging as speakers and leaders,” Campolo said. “We keep occupying leadership without stepping aside and getting behind these speakers.”

I continue to be impressed by Campolo and his relentless pursuit of Godliness. I find myself, along with a group of others, looking to hand things on to the next generation, in this, a digital age. As a youthworker I am continually confronted with my age: from the effort it takes to keep up with the ‘lingo’ through to realising one of my oldest friend’s ‘little’ boys will be in my youth group come September this year! There’s a group of us who felt God’s prompting to re-launch a youth event which hasn’t run for 10 years. Most of us in the group benefitted from being young leaders the first time around. We were encouraged by the ‘older’ members of the team (some of whom were just the age I am now!) to lead and take risks knowing that they would be there to pick up any pieces. It was a real training ground for me and others (including the inimitable Ed Jones of Arise Ministries and Rachel Gardner who of course went on to found Romance Academy) and I am constantly thankful for those who stood aside, didn’t steal the spotlight, didn’t ‘occupy leadership without stepping aside’ to encourage and protect us as we learned the art of leading.

So we’ve re-launched The Happening, with a view to bringing all sorts of skills and abilities out of the teenagers we lead and love, whether that’s in music, drama, presenting, encouraging each other, praying, or any other ability these teenagers have  been given by God. We will not hog the limelight, we do not want glory, we simply want to see young people putting their faith into action and using their gifts and abilities to do that.

I like to think there’s something of King David, handing over to his son Solomon in all of that.

About Jenni Osborn