For historical perspective, I'm writing this in response to the recent wave of protests that are taking place in my home city of St. Louis, MO. These protests followed the encounter between Michael Brown and a Ferguson police officer that resulted in Micheal's death.
Now as people continue to march, pray, sing and call for justice, let’s also make an intentional effort to connect with the next generation. In addition to the protesting we need to think about how we're going to educate the next generation.
We need to add some Civics studies in our church Bible classes, so they can learn and understand how government is supposed to work. A future mayor of Ferguson could be sitting in your youth group.
Let’s add some math and reading tutorials so they can get prepared for the real world. Let’s add some etiquette and conflict resolution training in our Sunday schools, BTU and YPWW curriculum. Teach some checkbook balancing and financial management along with life-trauma counseling.
It’s time for change in the church, too. Otherwise, we pastors are no different than the St. L County police in ignoring the real needs and cries of a generation that is drowning in anger and frustration.
Yes, we can still cast out demons and call down fire from heaven, but our youth are still going to need to learn how to deal with their pain and make wise, solid decisions, which means the adults, their true role models, are going to have to make some changes, too.
Adults have to learn how government and politics work. Votes can change the tide on who is the next mayor of a city or the president of a school board.
Adults have to know more than the latest plot on Scandal and the favored singers on Sunday Best. Adults have to help with homework and stop keeping up with Jay-Z, Beyonce, the Housewives, and the Preachers of LA.
If we truly honor the family of Mike Brown, then start preparing our kids for the future, the way his family was trying to steer him in the right direction.
Hands Up for our youth, Hands up for our future….