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Introduction to Special Issue

The Tidings is pleased to introduce “Coming of Age in Christ.” This special issue for 2021 is dedicated to briefly examining several issues young people face.
Read Time: 2 minutes

The Special Issue is largely authored by young writers for other young adults. They share their experiences and advice on how to implement spiritual principles in modern days—how to become sons and daughters of the light.

When in the slippery paths of youth
With heedless steps I ran,
Thine arm unseen conveyed me safe,
And led me up to man.

Considering that Hymn 133 was written in 1712 by English essayist Joseph Addison (1672-1719), it appears that some situations are universally applicable from generation to generation.

While the temptations of an earlier generation are undoubtedly different from this present one, the same principles apply. And the time honored resolution remains to “Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.” (1 Cor 16:13 NKJV).

But how to do it? Young adulthood can indeed be a “slippery path” without a God-centered life. It’s a time of becoming more self-aware and independent. A time to develop critical thinking skills. A time to understand why you have come to a given belief. A time of distancing from parental influences. A time to step away from worldly influences. A time to implement life choices. Each generation provides cherished contributions to our community.

Young people today are faced with unprecedented challenges to faith, with the “pollutions of the world” (2 Pet 2:20) being stronger and more formidable than ever. Yet, we see in this generation a fresh and encouraging spark of love for God and a desire to grow faith.

This generation emerges into a community that is increasingly global, more connected, and yet still struggling with longstanding challenges.

This special issue is divided into three groupings.

The first section deals with Life Within the Ecclesia. This section speaks to how we can serve each other during times of trouble, how we can be more effective with intergenerational dialog, ideas for transitioning after CYC, how to engage in open discussion of issues, and two examples of witnessing.

In the second section, Making Important Life Decisions, articles focus on selecting a college experience (including four testimonials from those who recently faced this decision), and choosing career paths.

Finally, the third section is about Growing Spiritually. This section shares counsel from young people about personal prayer, appreciating differences within our community, understanding the challenges and opportunities of single life, looking at how life can unfold very differently than expected, and effectively studying the Scriptures in the digital age to facilitate growth in the Lord.

Whether you are a young person in our community or more seasoned in life, we can all benefit from the wisdom of these writers in our walk and in our support of others in our community.

Special thanks to Sis. Melinda Flatley, Bro. Alan Markwith and Bro. Joe Hill for their leadership on this issue.

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