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Finding meaning in a time of generational upheaval

Church in the Community - Media Release in the Herald: 27th November 2023

Source: TCN / Hayley Braun
Date Added: 2023-11-27

Category: General NewsTCN NewsIssues - General
We are in a time of great transition.

All over the world you can see the mark of a new era, the handing of the baton from one generation to another, be it in business and enterprise, educational institutions, or the Church at large.

The "Baby Boomer" generation has made its mark and is looking to what the future will hold for what they have built.

Travelling around the world and experiencing various church environments, I have become keenly aware of an increasing gap in most Christian institutions.

This gap is found between the generations and the way they think and belief systems around thriving in life.

The rapid change of technology has created a world fundamentally different from the ones the "Baby Boomers" and "Generation X" grew up in.

The world has become smaller, and information of all kinds is at our fingertips, causing us to feel a sense of pseudo-power and understanding of our existence. And yet we are not more free.

If you have not realized it yet, we are in a reformation and the big question is “are you being reformed or are you a reformer?”

Smartphones, technology, social media, etc are connecting us to a plethora of thoughts and ideations more than ever before. Where we once were looking for information, we now need discernment to judge which information is good.

Truth is being called relative, sexual identity fluid, and morality is being reframed.

These new values based on fragile ideas are attempting to drastically shift the foundation of society.

All this is in the search for truth and meaning in life.

The Church needs a response to what is happening around us.

Our children are turning to the world to understand their existence, seeking some kind of truth that could liberate them from the confines of their limited understanding.

Humanism is real and rampant - a religion that attempts to make a "god" in our own image and understanding - shrinking our existence down to a finite reality when we are in fact infinite beings created for a greater purpose than simply "living our best life".

When we remove God from our essence as people we shrink down our significance and purpose to meaningless moments where success is dependent on how we feel instead of what is true.

This leaves us empty, living selfishly, searching for moments of fulfilment, and at what cost?

I often hear critical statements about the younger generation, but do we realize they are our future?

I believe a key to this issue we face is for us to make room for the next generation to rise in leadership alongside those who forged the path that has gotten us to where we are.

It is not one generation or another, but a large enough table for all of us to sit at and bring our perspectives.

This will require prejudices, offenses, and pride to be removed and a desire to seek understanding over being right.

The younger generation has a depth and curiosity that draws me to wonder what will satisfy them?

2 Timothy 3:5 describes the dissatisfaction of living in "the appearance of godliness but denying its

This, I believe, is a massive driver in our up-and-coming leaders of the next generation - they will be seekers of truth and not simply information.

Appearances will not cut it.

Black-and-white thinking will need to be bolstered by deep connection and understanding of the heart and why of God not simply the what.

This pursuit can seem to an older generation as shallow, but I believe if we dig deep enough, we will find many times it is a pursuit of the real thing in a very "plastic" world.

I believe the bombarding questions of current culture will be answered in the wisdom of the old generation and the out-of-the-box questions of the next.

We will have to abandon our need for everything to line up in one thought and allow the God of mystery and eternity to take us to the depth of why we are and who He is for us.

The embrace of tradition and the welcome of young passion will need to find its place in our leadership structures.

Hear me. This is not altering the truth, which does not and cannot change, but instead an awakening to the fact that the truth is Jesus and He is not a good story or a simple set of "how to's" but a living and personal God (John 14:6).

We need an Acts 2 awakening, where the church is willing to embrace the move, the Holy Spirit is wanting to bring.

We will need to make room for the shake-up of our structures to invite old and young to experience the Lord for who He is and what moves His heart.

Will we as leaders allow the hunger of our youths' hearts to provoke us to seek God for more?

Will we allow it to drive us into the Word to find solutions in God's ways and ground it in the grace and wisdom of old?

Let us humble ourselves, join together, and seek the face of Jesus to answer the thirst of culture that earthly wisdom could quench.

Hayley Braun
Pastor Bethel Church and Overseer Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry.

Find her book at
Source: TCN / Hayley Braun
Date Added: 2023-11-27

Category: General NewsTCN NewsIssues - General
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