21 Aug #NextGenWin
Hi friends! I’m Rachel, and I’m so grateful to be a part of the United launch team, and specifically, to have the privilege of serving kids and families.
I went to Disney for the first time this past year, and my favorite ride was Soarin’ in Epcot. Basically, you put on these glasses, sit in a seat, and all of a sudden you’re flying over the Pacific Ocean, climbing the Great Wall of China, standing in front of the Eiffel Tower, or coming face to face with the London Eye. It’s exciting, and awesome, and (my favorite part) not a rollercoaster.
You’re still in your seat, but your perspective and view are different. You look through these glasses or filter, and all of a sudden, everything has changed.
I think this is what happens when we meet Jesus.
That’s why our final culture-shaping value is #NextGenWin, because we believe that when you meet Jesus and start looking at life through his story, everything changes. When you live life knowing that you are a son or daughter of God because Jesus died for you and wants a relationship with you, the circumstances around you might not change, but your story does.
When Jesus was here on earth, crowds tended to follow him everywhere, and everyone wanted to talk to him. He was a big deal. One day in particular, all these kids came asking to see Jesus, and his closest friends and followers turned them away, saying Jesus didn’t have time for them.
They brushed these kids off as less important, but Jesus said no, let them come to me. And then he said again, Don’t stop them. The kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
The next generation matters. They matter to God and they matter to us. And because of that, we want to help them win–in their relationships at home, at school, in their neighborhoods, and ultimately in their relationship with Jesus.
We never know what a kid or student is walking in the door with, or what they’re carrying around when we meet them in the grocery story, or at the playground, or in a school. But, as the church, we want them to understand that no matter where they are–whether life’s great, or school’s hard, and their parents are struggling, and they feel like they have no friends–they know Jesus loves them.
We want this to be something that defines United from day one. We want to point kids and students to Jesus and help them win by listening to them, by investing in them, by celebrating them, and by showing up in their lives.
This includes the kids and students who come to United, and those outside the walls of United too. We’re a church for people who don’t go to church, which means we are for the next generation in our community, in our places of work, in our neighborhoods, in our families.
Let’s listen to them, invest in them, celebrate them, and show up in their lives. Let’s help the next generation win by showing them that we are for them, and that, more than anything, God is for them.