In my last segment I introduced you to Generation Y – or Millennials – as they are affectionately called. This generation is stronger, bolder and wiser, but in some respects, they are also weaker. We can’t fault them for that; as parents, we tried to shield them from the hardships and struggles so they would not have to go through what many of us did. With this young and more astute generation, come unique opportunities and challenges. Our young people today are exposed to things that we never even imaged. While technology continues to advance, it is a blessing and a curse. Social media is creating issues for some young people in ways that make them question their choices, their friends, their looks and dreams. On the one hand, they are told that the sky is the limit, and on the other hand, they are bombarded with glimpses of OUR past – hate, racism, and misogynistic attitudes.
We must continue to support, empower and prop up our younger generation – lest they fall prey to the world. We must lift them up in prayer, listen to and respond to their questions openly and honestly, and most importantly, we must lead by example. It’s not enough to say ‘because I said so.’ We must teach them – in love and by example. Let’s reaffirm our talk, by making sure it aligns with our walk. Let’s share our stories and, yes, even our shame – those things that our parents and grandparents ‘swept under the rug’ or whispered about when we were not ‘allowed’ in the room with grown-ups. Let’s use real talk, and not ‘temple talk’ that we don’t even understand, but that has been passed down through generations. And, yes, it’s okay if we seek to learn, study and begin to understand what we believe together.
Lest we forget, we are not perfect. In some cases, the only difference between what we did as youth and what youth today are doing, is there was no Snap Chat, Twitter, Facebook or cell phone cameras to capture our misdeeds. Next week, some tips to help Millennials continue to be stronger, bolder and wiser.
Peace and power,
© Dr. Melvin O. Marriner,
We invite you to join us at Grove Church, 5910 West Norfolk Road, Portsmouth, Virginia, Sundays at 8 a.m. and 10:30 a.m., Tuesdays at noon and Wednesdays at 7 p.m.