Youth News - April 2014
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Youth News
April 2014
by Hector Meza

11 The angel of the Lord came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah that belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, where his son Gideon was threshing wheat in a winepress to keep it from the Midianites. 12 When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior.” Judges 6:11-12

As we journey through the 50 day adventure one of the themes from the second week was, “going on a God hunt.” The emphasis was placed on the fact that God is moving and working around us, displaying His grace and love to us, we simply need to make ourselves aware or be on the lookout for those moments. God hunt sightings are supposed to be moments where we are reminded of God’s grace to us. This idea was drawn out from a passage in 1 Samuel where King Saul is placed in a vulnerable position for David to take advantage.

As I thought about God hunt sightings, however, I kept getting drawn back to the story of Gideon from the first week of the 50 day adventure. In the verses above, we can see God speaking words of encouragement to a frightened Gideon. These words must not have sunk in because God would go on to encourage Gideon 7 more times! Here was a man whose faith was so shipwrecked that even though God was speaking face to face with him, he still couldn’t take hold of that promise.

When I think of how many un-Godly messages our students receive every day from the media, friends or our culture it’s easy to see how they could feel like Gideon. They don’t feel free to enjoy the fullness of God’s blessing because they’ve been forced to labor in a winepress. One of the ways that God’s used to combat these negative messages in my life has been Christian music and worship. There have been countless times when for one reason or another I have not been able to understand God’s grace to me. Kind words from a brother or sister, a great message or even Bible verses will sometimes not be able to lift me from a pit of unbelief. At those times, God has used a song to literally lift my heart from the depths.

It is in this spirit and in the spirit of the God hunt that I’ve decided to give our students a 30 day challenge. The challenge is to listen to only Christian music for 30 days. The hope is that they will be able to hear God’s reassurances more clearly as they drown out the negative voices that flood their world. The challenge will also benefit our Christian brothers and sisters who are missionaries in the difficult mission field of the music industry. I understand that this challenge is a difficult one but I also believe it could be eye opening and soul lifting. I encourage the students to listen to Christian musicians from genres of music that they enjoy; this is not the 30 day hymn challenge. There are many great Christian rap, metal, country and rock musicians trying to glorify Christ in every possible way. There are many great websites where they can find those artists. I hope that this challenge will yield stories of victory and healing.

How about you? Are you up for the challenge? In what ways is God trying to get your attention so that He can reaffirm you? I encourage you to join us on this challenge and see how God can change your life.

Hector Meza

 
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