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Jesus is my morphine

October 23, 2006

I picked up the guys for Switch on Friday and we were talking about church and youth group on the way to Elgin.

One of them mentioned – without naming – a kid he knows who was pretty heavily involved in drugs until he started coming to youth. This kid started to clean himself up, and then quit coming to youth group meetings, and went back to the drugs.

I can categorically say, from years of personal experience, that no drug can provide the purpose, finances, escape, self-worth, euphoria, or reason that Jesus does. I know that, but its hard to tell people that. If you’ve never been in His tangible presence, you read the beginning of this paragraph and shake it off in disbelief. You have to meet Him to believe it; there has to be an encounter.

So what happened with the afore-mentioned kid? In the few weeks or months that he was coming to youth group, he did not encounter Christ (but then again, maybe he did and later chose to ignore Him). They say if your faith is not in Jesus by the time you’re 18 it usually takes a dramatic encounter with the living God to get you there.

The point is I’ve been thinking about this mystery kid for three days. I don’t know what happened, and I’m not beating myself or our youth ministry up – because our youth ministry is amazing and we’re seeing the fruit of it every week. It just makes you wonder: Am I not in prayer enough for these kids? Did I do everything I could to engage that one while I had the chance? Because really, all I can do is reflect Christ and get the kids to a position where they can see Him themselves – but am I doing that? Am I praying enough? Is there something else in my life that would hinder the work of the Holy Spirit during youth services?

Lord, I ask for a fresh burden for the young people in McHenry County. Draw me into intercession on their behalves; annoint me to do the work You’ve called me to do. If there is something further I need to correct in myself, show me, Holy Spirit, what that is. Raise up a generation of young people in America who will lay down their lives every day for Your Name. Raise up a battle cry in the hearts of youth leaders all over this country to fight for their little brothers and sisters. In Jesus’ Name …

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