This overflow Monday brings our relationships series, It’s Complicated, to a close. In this series we’ve covered 7 relational seasons: spiritual relationships, friendship, singleness, dating, marriage, parenting, and mentoring. God did some incredible things through this series, and we saw dozens surrender to Christ, many for the first time!
This week we covered the topic of mentoring the next generation. Enjoy…
To quote the great theologian, Lloyd Christmas (Dumb & Dumber), “Maybe they’re right. Old people, although slow and dangerous behind the wheel, can still serve a purpose!”
That backhanded compliment (if you can call it that) ended up getting him “robbed by a sweet old lady on a motorized cart!”
He was right with the “purpose” part. All of us, old or young, have a God-given purpose for our lives – regardless of the season we are in.
The final installment of It’s Complicated brought us to a season often referred to as “empty nesters.”
I don’t love that term because it seems to imply that once your kids are gone and the “nest” is empty, your job is done. Parenting complete. Investment over. Now you can go with life and go back to thinking primarily about yourself.
But that’s not Biblical. In fact, Titus 2 raises the bar for the “older” crowd. Part of the “good doctrine” Titus is instructed to teach is to command the older generation to teach and train the younger generation.
“Older” is an arbitrary term though, because technically, we’re all older than someone. Even if you’re not older in physical age, you may be further along spiritually. And again, even if not, Paul told Timothy not to let people look down on his youth, but to set an example.
Bottom line: influence is for all and for life. Your “nest” (sphere of influence) is longer than an 18-year period while children are at home, and much bigger than the four walls of your house.
Titus 2 gives what I like to think of as the step-by-step instructions for mentoring. You might call it the spiritual syllabus for a life of influence.
ACTION: Teach & Train
Investment requires both conversation (teaching) and demonstration (training). Talk plenty, but do even more.
TARGET: Younger, upcoming generations
At every age, we have the opportunity and responsibility to set the example for those who are watching. Like it or not, there are plenty of eyes on you. Let your life be their lesson.
CONTENT: Biblical & practical wisdom about relationships & life
They were instructed to teach the younger generation about marriage, parenting, life, and Godly integrity. Those topics are both Biblical and practical, and should be ongoing topics of conversation and demonstration.
PURPOSE: That the word of God may not be reviled
The whole point of any of this is to live a life that is 1) worth imitating, and 2) defensive against the enemy’s attacks. He will try hard to revile (mock, oppose) the word of God, but our lives and our investment into others can prevent it.
Influence is not just for presidents, politicians, and parents. Influence is for grandparents, middle schoolers, young married couples, my 7 year old daughter, and everyone in between. Eyes are on us, so let’s commit to speaking truth into the lives of the people around us every time we can. And beyond that, as you’re able, don’t just speak it, walk through life with them as well!