Notes from Jan

And a Teen Shall Lead Them

February 20, 2018

Teenagers scare some folks.

They interest and challenge me, speaking up or standing out, some through hair and body piercings, most normal  as the rest of us. (There’s a scare.)

Teenagers, like us,  sometimes misunderstood, housing insecurities, pressures within/without,  changing bodies, also carriers of hopes and dreams. God’s beloved kids,  each named with photo on heaven’s refrigerator.

As news unfolds, following the mass killing at a High School in Parkland, Florida, listen to the resolve of many of the survivors.

Consider this comment from a fourteen year old, “We don’t want comfort; we want change!”

She’d lost four of her friends.

History and current news reveal names of other standout teenagers:

Salvador Gomez Colon, age 15

Saint Therese of Lisieux, age  15

Krtin Nithiyanandam,  age 15

Anne Frank, age 16

Hector Pieterson, age 16

Malala Yousafzai, age 17

The Apostle Paul wrote the following  to a young man named Timothy:

“Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young.  Be an example…”  (I Timothy 4:12a NLT)

A handful of Florida teenagers have issued a rallying cry  for change, change ignored or blocked by some of our older leaders, too often muzzled by money.

These hurting teens don’t need or want coddling or comfort, but change and not just in regard to gun control.

Perhaps Lent’s not only a time to listen to God but to the cries of God’s children here and beyond our borders,  youth caught in the evils of human slavery,  civil and religious wars,  poverty, abusive  homes,  barbaric working conditions, mental illness, opiate addiction, sub-par or no education. Silent sobs circle the globe, our young crying for basic human rights and needs.

Lord, have mercy on us.

God bless and protect these courageous teenagers with wisdom as they gather to March for change.

Anyone else want to join a youth movement?

















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  • Reply Russ Bishop February 20, 2018 at 4:59 pm

    …and all God’s people said, AMEN!

    • Reply Jan Carlberg February 21, 2018 at 2:50 pm

      These brave teens have much to teach us shrinkers and shirkers.

  • Reply Sue Andringa February 20, 2018 at 5:25 pm

    Yes, Lord have mercy! You say, “the little children shall lead you”. Show us the way that we should go …

    • Reply Jan Carlberg February 21, 2018 at 3:01 pm

      My problem is I know more than I do. I sometimes referred to Jud as a Micah man in reference to how I saw him do what God says we’re to do in Micah. “He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8 NIV) Sometimes “walking humbly” becomes a march for justice and a way to love mercy for others.

  • Reply Radina Welton February 20, 2018 at 8:41 pm

    I’ll join! I woke up this morning with this thought flooding into my mind: I have ten children (plus spouses) and grandchildren working in and attending schools in 10 different school buildings. Given the chilling statistics of the past months, what are their chances of at least one of them experiencing a school shooting? So scary!

    Nevertheless, I am so encouraged by our young people getting fired up and taking hold. When I read stuff like I did in a posting on FB this morning about how our teens are spoiled, disrespectful, feeling entitled, etc, etc, I get angry and fired up too. Yes, I want to join this NEVERAGAIN movement and pray my heart out for adults to come to their protection.

    • Reply Jan Carlberg February 21, 2018 at 3:07 pm

      You go, Grandma! I’m with you. Thanks for standing with the kids…on behalf of our grandchildren and children and grandchildren everywhere. If teens are “spoiled, disrespectful and entitled”, we’ve done it to them…too much for them. These teenagers are giving us the gift of a wakeup call for our families, churches and all institutions that we’ve elected to influence and govern society.

  • Reply Jeri February 20, 2018 at 10:42 pm

    Amen Jan! They can keep this going. Social media is their energy and I am proud of what they have had the courage to do so far. May God bless their efforts.

    • Reply Jan Carlberg February 21, 2018 at 3:12 pm

      They are courageous, Jeri. May we be as brave in our choices today.

  • Reply Elizabeth Payne February 22, 2018 at 3:03 am

    Jesus was an example at age 12, teaching in the temple. His wisdom amazed the elders.

    The surviving students that have speaking out have been putting some of their elders to shame with their passion and eloquence during this time of grief. They are not letting the sacrifice that their friends and teachers made to save their lives be in vain.

    This is a generation of children and young adults who are very aware of their world. They will be an exciting generation to walk beside, guide, mentor, inspire and be inspired by.

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