There is a young woman at my church who makes me smile every time I see her. She is not just beautiful, she is strong. Tall, model-status lovely, smart, and full of life. It was my honor to host her 18th birthday party here at Autumn House.

They danced, sang, swam and laughed the night away, then all the girls spent the night!

It was crazy, sweet fun with giggles galore and more food than should be legal. What a great group of young people.

The best part? They all love Jesus. You can see Him working, each of their stories so different. When I spend time with these kids, I am encouraged. God has not abdicated His plan for the next generation. There is a remnant of young Christ-followers that is thriving, pushing back the darkness, pursuing truth and a life of holiness despite the pressures of a toxic culture. But they need us to stand with them, celebrate them, see them. They need us to believe in them, in the God who lives within them. Call out the gifts you see, pray for them and encourage their generation to develop their strengths and stand in a culture that grows increasingly hostile to the simplicity of the gospel. They need us to model that strength and the grace that fuels our own walk with the Lord so they can have a vision for theirs.

Gosh, I love what God is doing in today’s young people. I want to be part of it. Hosting a birthday party may be a lot of work, but the rewards in hugs and shouts of, “Hi, Miss Jeanine!” when I see them at church are absolutely priceless.

God wins.

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