Dr. Dharius Daniels reminded us at the Orange Conference 2019 that our presence on this planet has purpose. Here are a few further thoughts from his talk.

God told Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you.” God formed you for the purpose in which you were created. And God knew you before you knew you; nothing surprises Him, and He wants to use you.

God gets personal when it comes to formation. He used words when it came to creating the universe, earth, plants, and animals, but when it came to people, God used His hands. God got His hands dirty.

We are not youth workers, children’s directors, etc. We are purpose partners. 

Sometimes a kid or teenager comes into our lives when we’re not expecting it and it’s not in our plans. But we need to start seeing many of our interruptions as appointments that God puts on our calendars.

In different seasons, different voices have different values. It takes a village, both naturally and spiritually to raise a child. Some plant, some water. God gives the increase.

In his process of getting better at this, Dr. Daniels went through the following steps:

  • Examination: Understood his proclaimed values vs. his actual priorities. We can say we care but it’s another thing to show we care.
  • Investigation: If this matters to us, we have to put my eyes on it. He saw the purpose partners in his church were not properly supported.
  • Investments: Realized that we cannot delegate the care of the next generation to one department in the church. They also realized they needed to invest more organizational energy and resources.

The church is often the only place where we can come to conclusions without doing the proper investigation.

Leading the next generation is not the responsibility of a next gen department but of the entire church.

As Dr. Daniels wrapped up, he left us with this thought: May the people’s hands never replace the Potter’s hands in shaping and molding the next generation.

Photo credit: Provided by ©Taylor Zorzi / Zorzi Creative and The Orange Conference

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