It is July 4th week and there is a lot of talk about trouble in America. Many people are lamenting the spiritual condition of our country and some are even saying there is no hope for America.
After this week, I beg to differ.
We just finished a week of summer camp for teenagers. As I reflect on the experiences of the week, I have a renewed sense of hope and positivity. Here is why:
I met some young, dynamic spiritual leaders who are willing to sacrifice an easier life in order to serve as a positive influence in the lives of others. Leaders like E.J. Mirelez and Perseus and Lorena Gross (Confess and Be Free) and Israel and Erin Noboa care enough about today’s teenagers and tomorrow’s leaders that they give of themselves in unbelievable ways. They exude hope.
I watched adult local leaders, pastors, youth pastors and youth leaders serve the kids of their churches and communities. They did without sleep, they gave personal finances, they put up with nonsense – all because they believe in their kids. They are reason for hope.
I watched some pretty troubled kids be transformed. Many of the teenagers at camp come from very difficult backgrounds. Many of these kids do not have positive role models at home. Some are neglected and abused. Some of them have little exposure to hope. But once they saw it in action, they embraced it! They are hope!
There is hope for the world! The future can be bright. We cannot give up on the possibility of our country and world turning to Christ. This week showed me that when true hope is offered, it is received.
Maybe instead of spending our time lamenting about how bad things are, we should get busy sharing hope. It works!