“Do you have Instagram?”
I looked at the man across the counter of the donut shop and shook my head. He was trying to connect me with the store’s coupon offer. Needless to say, I couldn’t jump on the bus.
I twaddle back and forth with the lingering frustration that I don’t fit in to my generation. Oh sure, in many ways, I am certainly a Millennial:
-I remember when terrorism wasn’t a thing
-I remember the advent of cell phones and pre-HD days (hey there, 2004, nice slow-mo effect in that movie)
Despite shared life experiences, in many ways, I feel irrelevant among my demographic. This unfortunately can extend to the Bible College cafeteria.
Problem 1: I have a deep heart for the lost of my generation. And I struggle to connect with them.
Subpoint B: How can I preach the Gospel to Millennials if I loathe social media?
Must I become all things to all people and get an Instagram? My heart is not there, and I believe much of what was intended for a good thing has been reduced to mindless narcissism and emptiness.
It’s a frustrating position. I want to be effective for the Lord.
I think, though, that for anyone wrestling with the question of relevancy, the solution to the cage-match-with-ourselves must always rolls back to the same beauty:
The Good News of who Jesus Christ is (life, perfect, the Son of God, the True Vine), what he has done (made atoning sacrifice for our sins and brought us to God), and what we must do now to be saved and have eternal life (respond to God’s call through belief in Him, turn away from the old life by his divine enabling) is transcendent. The truth is relevant at all times. God is relevant to all people. And I am a people.
So are you.
The Hindu in the streets of Hyderabad, the Muslim woman cooking over a dirt floor in Afghanistan and sweating under her burqa, the atheist prowling the library of Harvard, the depressed drunk man living homeless under the Dearborn Street Bridge in Chicago…
Yes, even the Millennial stranger sitting next to me on a bus swiping away on Tinder.
All these image-bearers need their image restored. And I know the Answer to their deepest longings. His name is Jesus. He is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). He is the ultimate revelation of who God is (John 1:1, 18). The Gospel, and perhaps a little bit of context in the presentation of it, is truly all I need to be relevant.
If God leads me to a place where more is required to be effective, then I will submit to his guidance. But ultimately, the necessary component that permeates every human being across the board is the sweet news that Christ is Lord and has come to take away sins, transform us, and bring us into a relationship with God (John 1:29; 2 Cor 5:17; Eph 1:4-7).
That’s worth seeing and singing about. Praise God, because it’s by his power any of this goes down at all (Phil 1:6; John 15:4).