October 30 I Saturday
2 Timothy 4
“Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, ‘I find no pleasure in them...’”
David was a man after God’s own heart long before he did anything of political significance. As a young shepherd boy, he developed a heart towards God, which remained the case when he became a military hero and Israel’s king. This follows a standard pattern in life. Who we are as young people—the way we react to circumstances and the ideals we prioritize—remains ingrained in us as we grow into the adults we become.
We often use the expression “boys will be boys” to excuse children from disruptive behaviour. The implication applies to girls as well. We may think it normal for young people to cause a certain amount of mischief or rebel against authority, and we shrug it off, assuming they will grow out of it eventually. But if we leave young people entirely to the sinful desires of their hearts, then how can we expect unruly boys and girls to grow into responsible and believing men and women?
Solomon urges remembering our Creator in the days of our youth. By remember, he does not mean simply “be aware of,” but to make God an everyday part of our lives. Solomon would have been taught about faith in God from his father, David. The early days of Solomon’s kingship show that he did have a relationship with God, but sadly, was led astray from the faith of his youth by his many pagan wives and their worship of idols. As an older man, Solomon is saying, “If I could start my life over again, I would make my Creator the core of my life from which everything builds because without Him, everything is meaningless.”
A Barna Group study showed that about two out of three people who are Christians made that decision before they were 18 years old. This tells us how essential it is to focus on evangelism with our young people and reminds us of the importance of encouraging godliness in our children. The best thing we can do for our children is to point them to Christ and to nurture in them kindness, honesty and a self-sacrificing spirit, because the dispositions they develop as children will, for the most part, be with them as they age.
Solomon’s life is a prime example that remembering our Creator in our youth is not foolproof. This does not mean God puts less effort into drawing adults to Himself, but that adults become more set in their ways. If we encourage young people to submit to Jesus Christ, we will see a new generation of leaders, researchers, teachers and many others who exhibit godliness and hold fast to God, making this world a better place.
Prayer: Almighty God, I know it is never too late, but may the core of who I am be centered around You. Grant me opportunities to share with the next generation the importance of remembering You. Thank You, God.