Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Spirituality of Youth in the Modern Age

Rev. Abraham Kuruvilla
27 He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.”

Saina Nehwal is arguably the best female Indian Badminton player currently in India. She has achieved the 2nd ranking in the world, winning three International tournaments back to back. Her biggest achievement is that she became the first Indian woman to reach the Quarter Final round at the Olympic Games. She is a recipient of the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award. She achieved this through sheer discipline.

As young people we should develop a life of discipline. That’s what separates a great people from an ordinary people. Discipline helps us to grow in knowledge (Prov 12:1), it is an expression of love (Prov 13:24), it helps us to develop self-control (1 Cor9:27), it is a necessary quality of a Christian (Titus 1:8).

Here in this passage Jesus is outlining the discipline of Love. The Love to God and Love to fellow humans. The love for God consists in the uncompromising and undiluted love. This is the centripetal force of discipleship. But at the same time there should be a centrifugal force and that is the Love to fellow humans. For in that constitutes the witness as young people. This discipline requires:

  1. Purpose: This answers the where of our discipline. We have to be purposeful in our discipline in the Lord. The sole purpose is to throw off the hindrances of sin that entangles us. 
  2. Focus:  This answers the how of our discipline. Our discipline is authored and perfected by Jesus. Becoming like Jesus is the focus of our discipline and it has to span our heart, mind and soul wherein lies the seat of indiscipline. Daniel didn’t resolve to defile himself. That resolve happened in the mind, the heart and the soul. But even before that, resolve happened on the knees of prayer and ardent study of the Torah. Peter exhorts his readers to get rid of former vices i.e., malice, guile, insincerity, envy, slander, passions, drunkenness, revels, carousing (1 Peter 2;1, 11; 4:3, 11).
  3. Encouragement: The endurance of the cross amidst scorn and shame is the eternal encouragement for us. Discipline is an aspect of sonship but also a quality of stewardship. As we discipline ourselves in the Spirit we have to encourage others likewise. Christianity is not a solitary following of our Lord but a complementary disciplining for our Lord. You have to complement yourselves by helping others to grow in the Lord.
  4. Result: This answers the why of our discipline. Discipline brings out the holiness in us that we thought would not have been possible. This holiness is functional and it functions itself in witness. In loving our neighbor and who is our neighbor? The person next to you today is your neighbor today.
In this modern age where we are tempted to go along with the flow of indiscipline, let us resolve in the Spirit to discipline ourselves in the discipline of love.


Father, enable us to live a life of disciplined love. Amen.


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