Giving Love - Ecclesiastes 11:10
April 14, 2023, 8:00 AM

So then, banish anxiety from your heart and cast off the troubles of your body, for youth and vigor are meaningless.

Solomon gives a reminder to youth. Youth is a great time; In the first third of your life you choose your faith, your vocation, your spouse. Youth can be an unpredictable time. Someone wrote: "The youth today are rebellious, pleasure seeking, irresponsible, they have no respect for their elders, and spend their days in idleness, their nights pursuing sensual lusts. They have no respect for authority nor for the traditions of the past."

Who said it? Plato made that statement several hundred years before Christ. I am not so sure many adults of our society have gained anymore wisdom through the years. Even with all the Viagra ads on TV it seems seeking sensual pleasures and enjoying life is the whole goal of mankind. Youth openly wonder, if sexual arousal can result in sexual satisfaction, why wait until marriage? If booze or drugs gives highs, then what's wrong with it, so long as nobody gets killed or hurt? If being under the authority of teachers or parents becomes too much of a hassle, then why not split and live on your own?

Elizabeth Jackson wrote a tract saying young people have always been restless and dissatisfied. Part of it is just growing up. What do young people really want from us as an older generation? “I'll tell you,” she writes, “they want first of all to be loved. Jesus looked at a young man who came to Him asking for some advice and asking some spiritual questions. The Bible says Jesus looked at him and loved him."

That's the reason so many popular songs of youth are about love which is so confused with sexual intimacy. Yet, there is no better real love story than the One in the Bible whose love made Him willing to die for youth and adults of all generations. Youth also want to be recognized as persons, as individuals. They want to be seen as different from their parents. They have their own aptitudes, own gifts that may be superior to parents. When it comes to spiritual things you can lead them just so far. When one is an adult God holds you responsible and you must make your own decisions concerning Jesus Christ. You cannot inherit your parents’ faith. Youth want to be trusted and nothing is more provoking to teens than parents who do not trust them. They want acceptance, to be listened to, and to be forgiven.

There is One who accepts, loves and forgives us, but that love must be returned. II Tim 2:22 says "Flee also youthful lusts, but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart." When we abuse our bodies, we pay for it later. 

Give yourself away. Be generous. Be diligent. Be wise. Be loving. Jesus Christ said in Matt 16:24-26 "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.”

This is gaining by giving ourselves away.