Dear Church Family,
Well, our first week as parents of a CRUMY kid is in the books! Words can’t express how much fun Taylor has had as an incoming 6th grader during Youth Week 2016. We have been particularly moved by the family worship experiences and had a great time playing dodge ball and serving together as a family at one of the Agape houses on mission day. I want to say a special thank you to John Cravens, Director of Youth Ministry, and Kendall Neeley and Kyle Powell, Associate Directors of Youth Ministry, for all of the hard work and planning that went into making this week so special for so many kids.
Now that I have a child in our youth program, I know this upcoming Sunday will be even more meaningful for me. If you’ve never witnessed a Youth Sunday, it’s pretty spectacular! To see the large number of seniors who have been impacted by our ministry stand up and give their testimony is an affirmation of the work we are doing here at Custer Road.
Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way she or he should go, and when they are older they will not depart from it.”
Statistics support this scripture. In The 4/14 Window by Dr. Dan Brewster, he points to research that says 85% of all Christian believers make a commitment to Christ sometime between the ages of 4 and 14. It’s one of the reasons we identified Building Strong Families as one of the Five Pillars critical to the current and future growth of Custer Road. Children and youth have been proven to be the most receptive to the message of the Gospel and are, as such, critical to the present and future of the global church.
If you are a parent or a grandparent, be encouraged by this as you struggle through the day-to-day challenges of raising up the next generation of believers. The seeds you sow in them will eventually result in a harvest, so stay the course. This morning, I was reflecting on Colossians 3:21. I was reading in The Message translation and was struck at the different way in which this commonly quoted verse is translated.
“Fathers, don’t come down too hard on your children or you’ll crush their spirits.”
Our children are a reflection of the Father and all of their traits are from Him. We must be cautious not to crush their spirits, but rather continuously point them down a path where their God-given traits can be used to glorify Him.
I hope you’ll make a point to be in worship with us this Sunday, and bring friends or family who have children in grades 6-12 who may not have a church home. This is a great time of year for students to plug into the youth activities here at Custer Road, and seeing so many other students here on Sunday is sure to inspire them to get involved.
Finally, I want to thank all of you who have reached out to our family following the death of Jennifer’s grandmother Lee Wilcox on Wednesday. Your kind words of comfort have been a source of God’s grace and peace for all of us.
See you on Sunday!
Reverend Kory Knott
Senior Minister, Custer Road United Methodist Church
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