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Posted on Fri, Nov 2, 2018

From our Director for Youth & Family

From our Director for Youth & Family: INSPIRING THE IDEALISM OF YOUTH Webster’s Dictionary states the term Idealism to mean, “an individual guided by idealism and one that places their highest ideals before and above practical considerations.” I find this interesting when I reflect on observations as youth director for the past 10 months. I have found that what separates youthful idealism from older, “wiser veterans” of the world is that our youth are still so inexperienced that they believe themselves to be self-sufficient to live according to their highest ideals. Because of this belief, they have not allowed themselves to be jaded by the world’s problems. As a result, they have vastly different goals and visions of the world than a “more experienced” adult (such as myself) does. They have the audacity to still believe that they can make a difference or change the world, and they grasp that all change begins with one individual person at a time – they think, why not let it begin with them? As youth director, I have observed that no matter how terrible, how gigantic or difficult their problems, the youth of today are able to able to keep compassionate eyes open to helping and seeing those individual faces who suffer – from the tiniest issues to the most difficult problems they encounter. Our youth are much more refined at seeing people for who they are as individuals… and not as skillful at putting people in clumps, situations or pre-judged people groups. Because of this, they are able to hear the unique stories and “suffering” that we all have, and do this without seeing through a lens that has already been negatively prejudiced or altered. As youth director, I continually work to encourage the youth to reach to their highest idealistic self. I encourage them to charge ahead and change the world, to change their community, their friends, their families and most importantly to allow God to change them from the inside! I encourage them to do this by tapping into Jesus’ power through prayer; only God’s empowerment bears the kind of fruit which allows them to have a lasting impact of compassion, love and ability, fruit that will help them change the amazing world around them – with great love.

Greg Reiff


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