The subject of this last Year 7-13 Conference was on a Normal Fruit-Bearing Life. The main line of burden was that we, as young people in this age, would realize who we are. To begin with, we are man created in God's image for the purpose of containing Him. But we are more than just man. We are also believers, and when we believed, we received God's life into us. As believers we are three things -- salt, light, and branches.
Matt 5:13-14 says that "You are the salt of the earth..." and that "You are the light of the world..." What does it mean to be salt and light? Salt has two unique functions: (1) it kills germs, and (2) it preserves. A good picture of this is fish. Once you kill a fish, it automatically begins to stink due to the decaying germs. Thus, many fishermen put salt with fish. This kills all the germs on the fish and preserves the fish so that it can later be fresh for food. This decaying fish is like the world around us -- stinking and decaying. We as believers in the world serve this kind of function as salt, of killing and of preserving. However, there is a danger. The danger of salt is that it can lose its salting function. As salt, we have to be careful not to lose our saltiness. How can we preserve our salting function? Lot's wife became a pillar of salt (and lost its salting function) because she looked back. Lot and his wife were probably somewhere in between Sodom and safety (maybe halfway?), but happened to turn around. The reason why she looked back was because her heart was still towards Sodom. She was not a 100%, absolute Christian but a halfway Christian. We must make sure that if we want to fulfill God's purpose we have to be absolute Christians, a full one-hundred percent. For this, we need to have a fresh love towards the Lord.
As light of the world, our function is to bring light to this darkened world. This world is full of darkness and chaos -- no one is clear of his direction. However, as light of the world, there is a danger as well. The danger is not that we lose our light. As believers our salting and shining function is not anything of our own. It is a natural capacity that issues from the divine life that we have received from God. However, there is a danger that we can cover this light, and hide it under a bushel. A bushel is a unit of measurement and it typifies the worries and anxieties of our life. When we are bound by the same worries that unbelievers faced, we can cover our light. As young people in this world, we are faced with many anxieties in life. Following the latest fashion. Getting the newest shoes. Etc... All these anxieties and worries in life make us no different from the unbelievers and covers our light under a bushel. For this, we need to talk to the Lord. We need to let the Lord know all our thoughts. Phil. 4:6 says "In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God." We should let the Lord know everything, even of our worldly woes.
I'm realizing that this post is getting longer than I thought it'll be, so I'll save the branches for a later time. The conference was an exhausting but exhilarating time nonetheless. I thoroughly enjoyed enjoying the Lord with my dear young people, and hope that these ones will be the ones to join our generation in bringing the Lord back. Amen, Lord, come quickly!
|Four dear Year 7 brothers who were baptized at the conference. From left to right: Jordan, Ryan, Daniel, and Joseph.|