I’m not sure who first said it, but it’s become pretty much of a commonly held belief now that 80 is the new 60. I’ll believe anything that makes me younger. That still seems a little old, but the truth of the matter is that age is in your head. There are 20-year-olds who are older than me and 80-year-olds who are younger.
Here at the Catch, we’re all one age — engaged. Plugged in. Connected. Here at the Catch, we’re all one age — awake.
I wrote a song in 1970 called “Song of Salvation” and one of the lines in that song was: “See that train, boy, pulling [into/out of] the station/Get on board now, sweeping the nation.” I sang it both ways — “pulling into the station” sometimes and “pulling out of the station” other times. I could never decide, so I sang whatever seemed right at the time. If I sang it “pulling out of the station,” that meant something new was starting up — certainly something we all experienced in the early 70s. If I sang it “pulling into the station,” that meant that the end was near, and there wasn’t much time to get right with God, capturing the apocalyptic nature of the Jesus movement. Today, I most definitely sing “pulling out of the station,” because something is stirring among the Christian millennials and we are invited to be a part of it.
We are moving out of the station alongside the millennials seeking to partner in a shared vision to introduce the Gospel of Welcome — Grace Turned Outward — to everyone, everywhere. I am meeting for lunch with a millennial and I wish to encourage you who are over 50 to do the same. Open your eyes, look around, and I bet the Lord will introduce you to a waiting twenty- to thirty-something looking to partner with you. I say partner because cultivating intergenerational relationships is one of the most important ways in which The Catch Ministry is developing a flourishing faith in both young and old. This means changing the metaphor from simply passing the baton to the next generation to a more functional, biblical picture of the body — that is, the entire community of faith, across the entire lifespan, working together to fulfill God’s purposes.
While Christmas is an amazing season, I have never looked more forward to the New Year when we will be partnering with millennials to welcome those who epitomized the best of the best of the Jesus movement that blew fresh air through the Church and society. We’ll be interviewing guests who continue today to rally around the message of Jesus within their own sphere of influence. They will speak to the social and religious upheavals of the ‘60s and ‘70s — but with a new relevance as older, wiser pioneers peering into a new frontier unfolding today, and partnering with those in their twenties and thirties who are currently undergoing the same societal stresses and asking many of the same questions.
It is time for you to evaluate whether you need to first “pull into the station” because the end is near, and there isn’t much time to get right with God. Get right with Jesus, and then hop on board the next train out, as we move out of the station into something new that is stirring in all of us. It is the new frontier and this new frontier is called — Grace Turned Outward.