You have a purpose. You have a future. God has given you everything you need to fulfill your calling. These are words not every South African child hears. But if they attended one of Generations of Virtue seminars for school children (held at various locations across Pretoria and Cape Town in October and November, 2014), they heard it. They heard these things, and also other points to encourage them to pursue their God-given dreams and use the training available to them to learn and grow. As the children, some as young as 6 and some as old as 18, sat listening to “the team from America” (a Generations of Virtue group in our teens, 20s and 30s), they learned about famous people throughout history from diverse backgrounds who were able to fulfill their life’s mission, simply by using the opportunities given to them (however limited they may have been) and refusing to give into the enemy’s lies that tried to hold them back.
While the Generations of Virtue team shared truth with the children, they also warned them to avoid the lies of the enemy. Lies like, “You’ll never amount to anything. You’re not rich enough, smart enough, good-looking enough, etc. to pursue your dreams. You are not enough, and God isn’t either.” These lies, if believed, can cause children to turn to high-risk behavior as a means to cope with their pain. More often than not, they don’t know how to go to God or an authority figure with their problems. They may not know there is another option besides following the cycle of drugs, premarital sex, brokenness, and poverty (both physical and spiritual) they see their peers following. This is precisely why the Generations of Virtue team revels in every chance to speak to children – even young children – about God’s perfect ways and the reasons He gives us guidelines.
The goal of each session, whether we are talking to children about their futures, teens about relationships and sexuality, or parents about raising their children, is to help the audience see that God is good and He is faithful, and He can be trusted. God doesn’t want to steal our fun or place so many rules on us we can’t follow, but instead He wants us to have the most fun, experience the most joy, and enjoy His unadulterated pleasures. That’s not a message every child expects to hear when our team comes, but that is the one they get.
Author: Megan Briggs
Megan joined the Generations of Virtue team to become the Product Manager, a position which keeps her busy researching, reading resources, managing inventory and speaking to young people.