We have titled this video “To All Our Young People.” Its story captures our dream for how adults—parents, stepparents, grandparents, leaders, church members, neighbors, relatives—can reach out to young people. And at times even chase after them.

So we mean every word of that title.

More personally, I mean every word of that title.

…Young People

Teenagers and young adults, I believe God is especially fond of you.

In a world that doesn’t always know what to do with you, God is crazy about you.

While others may roll their eyes at your choices, God sees you. And gets you.

Forgive us adults for expecting you to act like an adult when you aren’t one yet.

…Our…

In a world that denies you the chance to be who you are, I claim you as ours.

As you’re wrestling with the pressure to achieve and perform as individuals, we call you part of us.

When you’ve blown it and think no one cares, we are trying to pay attention to you.

Forgive us for at times being too busy to extend our welcome mat to you.

…All…

By “all” I mean every single one of you.

The 23-year-old child of immigrants wrestling with sometimes clashing cultural identities.

The 18-year-old senior both eager and scared to move away from home.

The 14-year-old being offered drugs for the first time.

The 12-year-old still figuring out their combination lock for their new P.E. locker.

And everyone in between.

Every race and ethnicity.

And every socioeconomic status.

Suburban, urban, and rural.

Those who are currently part of a church. As well as those who are far, far away.

Forgive us for seeming to play favorites instead of equally valuing Every. Single. One.

…To…

I believe our world needs you.

Your passion.

Your empathy.

Your drive to improve and create.

Forgive us for being preoccupied by our devices and ignoring you.

Forgive us for sometimes turning our backs toward you.

And asking too much from you.

Deep down we want to offer our best to you.

We couldn’t imagine our lives without you.

Kara Powell

Dr. Kara Powell is the Executive Director of the Fuller Youth Institute (FYI), a faculty member at Fuller Theological Seminary, and Fuller's Chief of Leadership Formation. Named by Christianity Today as one of “50 Women You Should Know,” Kara serves as a Youth and Family Strategist for Orange, and also speaks regularly at parenting and leadership conferences. Kara is the author or coauthor of a number of books, including Growing Young, Growing With, The Sticky Faith Guide for Your Family, Sticky Faith Curriculum, Can I Ask That?, Deep Justice Journeys, Deep Justice in a Broken World, Deep Ministry in a Shallow World, and the Good Sex Youth Ministry Curriculum. Kara lives with her husband Dave and their three children, Nathan, Krista, and Jessica, in Southern California.


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