Sunday, October 14, 2018

Junior Theologians

From a message I sent to Awana leaders today:

Today would have been my great-uncle Dave Breese's 92nd birthday. He was a longtime friend of Awana back in its early days. Then it was the Awana Youth Association. He wrote the introduction or forward to one of its history books. When he passed away 16 years ago, they asked that any gifts in his memory be given to Awana. I called my aunt Carol, his widow, this afternoon and she thanked me for remembering his birthday. She once described Awana as “raising up little theologians.” That's exactly right.

Awana leaders are raising up young theologians. If that sounds like an overstatement, believe me, it's not. Compared to the spiritual darkness and desert in which we live right around us, we are raising up a Gideon's army of people who know the truth and are storing it up in their hearts.

Pick your favorite military academy, and think of yourself as being instructors in that school, training people to take on the world for Jesus. Yes, we want them to be ready for attacks that come their way, and we also want them to be able to advance the Kingdom, to contend for the faith, to be salt and light, and to help bring people into the kingdom.

How do you engage your clubbers with their mission? I have a simple suggestion. If you have a moment with a clubber during club, ask them who they can share what they've learned with this week. If they recited a Bible verse to you, ask them if they can think of someone at school they can tell about this verse. If they're having fun in Game Time, ask them if they can think of someone who would also have fun at Game Time. In the Large Group Time message, reinforce not just the Gospel, but our great calling and great reward for sharing the Gospel.

The embers of the Gospel still burn today, and sometimes it just takes a gentle breeze or whisper to stir anew the sparks again. As our land gets more spiritually dry, that could serve to make the Gospel spread that much faster once the fire is lit. Please pray for that day to come soon when we're all eager to share the Gospel with everyone around us, and everyone we tell is eager to hear it. Ask God for the faith that we could see exactly that in this area. This area needs the Gospel. People in this area need Jesus.

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