I’ve worked with the youth at my church for going on ten years. For the most part, they drive me crazy. You can tell them 42 times–in person, by text, by im, by email and even smoke signal–what time an event starts and they’ll still be late–claiming “they didn’t know.” You can give them an itemized list (delivered by the methods described above) of what they need to bring to said event and they’ll show up without a crucial piece of gear because “they didn’t know.” They talk when they should listen. They go mute when they should be talking.
But once a year this group pulls together and does enough good to make up for all the little irritants.
They participate in World Vision’s 30-hour Famine. For four weeks they get up in front of the congregation at 3 services each Sunday and explain what they’re doing and why. Then they stand at the back of the church after services and ask for donations. Lunch tomorrow (Friday the 27th) will be their last meal until Saturday night. They will travel to a rural mountain camp and do service projects for the needy community up there–fasting not only from food, but from their lives as well. No cell phones. No iPods. No tv.
The great thing is, they really have made a difference. In the past 11 years, they’ve raised over $80,000. When you consider that World Vision can feed a child for just one dollar a day, they’ve saved untold lives.
These kids truly believe that they have the power to make poverty history. They feel that their generation will be the one to make some real changes. They’re off to a great start.