This is something I think about a lot. My daughters are Gen Z. Their friends and dating pool are Gen Z. I have skin in the game.
What will become of this unique generation — whose span is bookended by 9/11 and COVID and whose very name suggests finality?
There’s a lot of good, but I’ve seen too many of their peers, some of whom I’ve watched grow up from infancy, fall prey to all kinds of self-destructive behavior. A few weeks ago, one from the class year ahead of my oldest jumped from the very bridge that my 2020 book release features.
It was a crushing moment even though none of us knew this young person.
“God,” I prayed as I lay down that night and pulled my Bible close to my chest, “Is there any hope for a generation that has been raised in a time like this?” God, like He so often does if we will actually listen, answered. His response to my moment of motherly panic was right there in Acts 3.
It’s a vignette from the time immediately after Jesus’s resurrection and return to heaven. The apostles were trying to get their feet on the ground as to how the church would function without Jesus’s bodily presence when Peter and John came across a disabled man — flat on the ground — begging in order to support himself.
It was the best the man could do.
But God could do better.
The Holy Spirit grabbed hold of Peter and Peter grabbed hold of the man. “I can’t offer you money,” Peter said as he pulled the man to his feet. “But, I can sure share what I do have. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”
And, the man did. He rose. He leaped. He praised his way all the way into the temple of God.
I know. I know. A typical Jesus story. But a handful of words at beginning of the account leaped like, well, a lame man healed by surprise. Before that life-changing day, the man was “lame from his mother’s womb.”
Lame from his mother’s womb. Literally born into unavoidable and insurmountable difficulty. Yet, that in no way limited what God could do.
That was true then. It is still true today. God is able and He is reaching out. Believers are reaching out alongside Him. (There really is a faithful remnant in spite of what circumstances would otherwise suggest.)
God is not limited by what Gen Z has experienced. He is not limited by what Gen Z or any other generation has not experienced. He is not limited by anything.
Hear Him! Hear what He is saying: “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!”