Elder Henderson couldn’t have said it any better.
“They want to be all up on Facebook but can’t put their face in this book,” said Elder Uleses Henderson, motioning to the Bible in front of him as he preached the 8 a.m. service on New Generation Sunday.
New Generation Sunday, held this past weekend at West Angeles, was dedicated solely to uplifting the next generation of worshippers. The New Generation Choir ruled the day musically. The message, delivered by Elder Henderson and Elder Lawrence Blake at 8 a.m. and 11 a.m., respectively, was aimed at pumping life and inspiration into every youngster that walked through the doors on Sunday.
Henderson’s message was entitled, “The Making of a Champion.” It served the purpose of confronting many of the youth’s most popular vices, encouraging the young generation to stray away from its fascination with scandalous social media techniques and television that paints a negative depiction of black people, and actively seek a stronger relationship with God.
Henderson’s message was highlighted by a number of references to the Bible and popular culture. Here are a few that stuck out to me:
“It’s hard to get kids to focus. They rather keep up with the Kardashians than keep up with their schoolwork. Society is teaching our kids that the quickest way to get to the top is to lay on your bottom.”
“Young girls can relate to Rihanna, but not to church. The youth can do the Shmoney dance but can’t read scripture.”
“Satan is busy. Society isn’t doing a good job of teaching the youth that Satan is real.”
“It amazes me that God believes in us but we struggle to believe in him.”
“Even when we’re backsliding, he’s still right there to say, ‘I believe in you.'”
“There’s a difference between being knocked down and being knocked out. If you’re knocked down, you get back up…Young people, you have to refused to be knocked out.”
“The devil is a dirty fighter. He’ll hit you with everything he’s got. But with God on your side, you’re always going to come away victorious…You might walk away with a few scars, but a scar is nothing but a healed wound.”
“Don’t compare yourself to others. God has something for me and he has something for you. Stay in your lane and on your own course.”
“Don’t disqualify yourself. The only way to lose the race is if you quit. God called you to the race for a reason. You’re already a winner before you got in the race.”
“We need a few haters around. God says in the Bible, ‘You prepare a table for me in the presence of my enemies.’ If you don’t have any haters, maybe you’re closer to Satan than you think.”
“Young, black men have enough energy to make a baby but not enough energy to take care of one…We need to teach our kids to be finishers.”
New Generation Sunday was truly a blessing, and the energy in the church, anchored by a mixture of young and veteran worshippers, was a sight to behold.
Until next year!