This month I would like to talk about ‘Wildfire’. I was looking up the meanings of wildfire and came across one in an historical context which seems quite fitting for what we want our young people to be like. Wildfire: ‘A combustible liquid such as Greek fire that was readily ignited and difficult to extinguish, used especially in warfare.’
This definition may shock you at first. You may think that is not what we want our children and young people to be like. However, I think we can agree that we want all our congregation to be readily ignited for Jesus! We feel we want our group to be excited about reading the Bible and talking to God. When there is so much to distract us these days, from phones, TV and the internet to sport, celebrities and fashion, it can be really tough trying to keep young people on task, when our attention span can be quite short.
I know we have talked a lot about the fact that we have put Caroline’s and my group together, and we are now starting to see the fruit from this. We are seeing more young people staying on through the years, and so the group is growing and we are sharing the gospel to more young people each week, through games, Bible activities and prayer.
We also want that passion for God to be difficult to extinguish. To us this means not just going into the stories that children are often told, but maybe looking at some of the stories that are tougher to understand, or considered ‘boring’ to read, or controversial for today’s society. We want them to have deep roots in their faith and relationship with God, so that when they are out in their schools, or after-school clubs, and someone challenges their faith, they won’t just give up there and then, but have confidence to stand up for what they believe in. At the moment we are going through the life of Moses, where we have seen God’s discipline on the Israelites causing them to wander the wilderness for 40 years and looked at the building of the tabernacle and what it meant for the Israelites as well as what we can learn from it today.
‘Used especially in warfare’. We are in a spiritual war: ‘Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith.’ (1 Peter 5 verses 8-9). As I said before, we want our young people to be firm in their faith. If any of them have a question, we are always happy to answer them no matter how difficult it may be. We strive to give them sound Biblical teaching and help them experience God for themselves.
Having looked at all this, I just want to point out how important the Light Party is. We may think Halloween is just a bit of fun, but spiritually it is a war zone. Whenever we hold the event, we either have people fall ill or technical problems, because of course the devil wants to stop what we are doing. So please pray for God’s protection, sign up to help, and bring your children along.