All the kids had dentist appointments this week. We easily filled up the waiting room. As we sat there waiting, we were facing a big television screen that had the Nickelodeon channel playing. I watched off and on while the kids were getting their teeth cleaned. I was amazed at the obvious amount of time, thought, and money spent on the programs. The first show I caught was coming to an end as we got there. It showed a group of 4 teenagers who all danced and sang. The girls were beautiful, all made up, and dressed attractively. The song they sang was obviously meant to send out a message to kids. This particular song was about how friends help each other out. Over and over and over they sang about how friends are always there to help each other out and how friends can turn a bad day into a good one and will always (really?) lend a helping hand. I realized that the writer of this song or program was trying to get out a message of hope to kids. Maybe while trying to tell them how to be a good friend.
BUT there is a problem with that. Friends, if a child even has any- lots don't, are human. Sinful. Selfish. Less than perfect. We all are! I am not always a good friend even though I know I should be. I'm not always there for my friends in the way I wish I was. There are times when I feel so down myself I don't feel like giving anything to my friend who may be discouraged also. It seems to me like they are giving a hopeLESS message to kids. Kids are going to set too high expectations on their friends. Or they will be wishing for a friend to help solve their problems and their need for acceptance.
I'm not trying to be a pessimist. See there IS an answer. I let my kids listen to songs about friends too. One of my favorites? "I am a Friend of God". I promise HE will never let them down. He'll always be there for them and will accept them and can solve all their problems.
Our family as a rule does not listen to secular music. Not because I think it's all bad but because I want their hope to be in something/ Someone secure. I hear the lyrics to songs on the radio while in stores. Words like, "I'm lost without you", "I need you", "You give me reason to live", "I'm obsessed with you"... What a set up for disappointment! What a false reality! I'd way rather my kids sing "I need you JESUS to come to my rescue" or "You are my magnificent obsession" or " You give me reason to rejoice", "You have made me glad", "In Christ alone my hope is found, He is my life, my strength, my song"......
Anyway, everything I saw on Nickelodeon that morning was interesting. I'm not saying it was bad. I'm just saying that a lot of people of put a lot of time into trying to give kids a positive message. But it's not a message that can offer them true hope or take care of their real problem. Sin. No friend on earth can take care of their sin problem or their eternity. But there is a Friend who can- and that's Who my family will sing about : )
Along those lines, that is why Brianna and Cameron are going to spend their summer with kids. They will be offering them the true message of hope and a Friend who loves them unconditionally and can take care of all their problems.
They could both use your prayers. They will have a very intense week of training to learn Bible lessons and counseling methods, how to teach Bible memory verses, songs, and so so much more. After that week of training, they will both be teaching 3 5-Day Clubs a day for 5 weeks. They will be tired I'm sure! They also have to raise their support by the middle of June. They are excited and have already started memorizing the required verses and have been reading the stories they are going to be teaching right from the source of all truth -the Bible. Please pray for them (and Matt as he too will be teaching and overseeing the clubs this summer) as they prepare for ministry this summer.