Thursday, August 28, 2008

Leaders for today . . . and tomorrow

While at the Mission India conference this past weekend, they showed a bunch of pictures of Indian children. At one point, someone said, "These are not the leaders of tomorrow! They are the leaders of today!"

The speaker gave an illustration of what he meant. He told of a little 9-year-old girl who had attended one of the Children's Bible Clubs. At the end of the club, she went to the leader and asked if she might have copies of the materials they had used. "I'd like to teach these things to my friends," she said.

"I'm sorry," said the leader, "but we don't have any extras. You can't have any."

"That's okay," said the girl. "I've memorized everything, and I'll teach them on my own."

So she gathered her friends--90 of them--and has since taught them in three separate classes of 30 students apiece. Not only has she taught them, but she has gathered 50 adults as well . . . and founded a church.

So this one 9-year-old girl has made a huge impact in her community.

I got thinking: Would we Americans even begin to imagine one of our kids doing such a thing? Would we allow her? I wonder if we should expect an almost demand such responsibility on the part of our children? Quit making excuses for poor behavior or the responsibility and, instead, expect them to step up to the plate and provide leadership!

We want, so much, for our children to have a good time and enjoy their childhoods, but I wonder if we actually do them a disservice. Would they actually be better off if they knew that what they do is vital to the health and functionality of the family?
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