Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 2 Timothy 2:22.
Our young people need to be surrounded with wholesome, uplifting influences. They are to be kept in the love of the truth. The standard set before them should be high. Some feel a desire to be left without restraint, that they may do as they please…. The fathers and mothers … in the church are under sacred obligation to watch for the souls of their children as they that must give an account. Let none, neither parents nor the youth, begin to believe that amusements are essential, and that a careless disregard of the Holy Spirit during hours of selfish pleasure is to be lightly regarded. God will not be mocked. Let every young man, every young woman, consider, “Am I prepared today for my life to close? Have I the heart preparation that fits me to do the work which the Lord has given me to do?”
Every youth should make God’s Word his guide and daily gather from the Word the instruction that is given. If some refuse to be guided by this instruction, they are sowing seeds that the enemy has placed in their hands, and they will not care to reap the harvest of the seeds sown….
There are many things which are right in themselves, but which, perverted by Satan, prove a snare to the unwary. The gathering together of our youth for a singing exercise sounds very harmless, but it has been my experience, during half a century, that these singing exercises often prove a source of much harm to souls. If the hearts of all who attend were right with God; if all loved God supremely, and desired to keep His glory in view; if all would strive to please Him, then such exercises would not prove harmful. But usually there are present many who do not realize that they are becoming more and still more unconcerned regarding their duty to please God. Their souls become indifferent. One has an influence over another, and the indifference manifested toward spiritual things increases. God’s Holy Word is not studied diligently day by day, and because of lack of spiritual food, they grow weak in moral power….
Oh, that every member, every worker, might realize that this life is a school in which to prepare for examination by the God of heaven with regard to purity, cleanness of thought, unselfishness of action. Every word and act, every thought, is recorded on the record books of heaven.—Letter 144, May 4, 1906, to the church in Mountain View, California.
The Upward Look p. 138
—-Asking all the prayer warriors to again pray for my daughter Jessica who is going to be in court again Thursday morning the 13th. Her husband is divorcing her due to her Adventist beliefs and they have two babies together. He has a large attorney firm and she has none. He is trying to manipulate things to get custody and make her life very hard. I told her the King of the universe is her attorney and He will come through! Shari
—-Please keep my friend Tamara and her husband Bill in prayer. Their marriage needs a healing. Connie
—-Pls pray for me and my baby for safe nd normal delivery maybe dis week or next week. IP
When I was about six years old, Gary and his parents discovered that there was another child in the neighborhood—me! He lived several blocks from my house and until then had no one to play with. In answer to his begging to be able to have a playmate, his parents walked with him to our house and asked if Gary could play with me sometimes. My grandmother invited them in and after being assured that they were fine people, gave her consent. I was not allowed to cross the street by myself, so Gary always played in my yard. We spent many hours playing together. I was so happy!
As the years passed, our horizons broadened. We often played at his house or just roamed the neighborhood together just having fun. It seemed as if we would be friends forever. Then, when I was almost ten, something happened that changed our plans. My mother got married again and I moved across town to live with her. Within a year, my grandparents moved to Florida. Gary and I seldom saw one another after that. I really missed him.
One day, near my fourteenth birthday, I happened to meet Gary when we were both downtown. We stopped to catch up on all that had happened since I had moved away. It seemed as if we would renew our friendship. I invited him to my birthday party in hopes that would assure that we would continue as friends.
It wasn’t a very big party. Only my two friends Gloria and June were there besides Gary. He was delighted to find that he was the only boy and began showing off. My mother was not pleased. Soon, it became apparent that he was attracted to them. He was totally ignoring me. He even went so far as to get their phone numbers so he could keep in contact with them. I was deeply hurt. He never asked for my phone number so we could keep in touch.
I thought of a day, about six years before, when I still lived with my grandparents. Gary and I were walking back from an errand at the store, when we saw two girls walking toward us. They stopped and talked to Gary. He totally ignored me. One of the girls asked him who I was and he told them that I was his cousin. I was shocked! I was brokenhearted and felt betrayed. I suddenly realized that he was not a friend at all. He just played with me because he had no one else who lived that near.
How often we, too, deny that we know our Heavenly Friend, just as Gary had denied me. How many times we allow other interests to build a wall up between our Dear Saviour and ourselves. We seem to be a friend to Him, but when we should declare Him to those around us, we keep quiet. We show by our actions that we are ashamed of the One Who gave His life for us. Jesus warned, “For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels.” Luke 9:26 Paul reminds us, “if we deny him, he also will deny us.” 2 Tim 2:12
God’s Holy Word reveals an incident of denial that stands as a warning for us today. After the last supper was over, Jesus began to plainly explain to his disciples what was about to take place. He told them, “All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered. But after that I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee.” Peter felt that he would never betray his Lord and Friend. He felt “ut Peter said unto him, Although all shall be offended, yet will not I. And Jesus saith unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. But he spake the more vehemently, If I should die with thee, I will not deny thee in any wise. Likewise also said they all.” Mark 14:27-31 That very night, at Jesus’ trial, Peter denied that he knew Him.
May we never deny our Great Redeemer no matter what may come our way. May we be bold to confess before others that Jesus is our Saviour, that He may confess before His Father and before the entire Universe that we are His friends. May we so live each day, that those around us will see in us the reflection of His character is my prayer.