Monday, September 6, 2010

Age Of Responsibility

Recently visited the Maghain Aboth synagogue with a group of TTC students at Waterloo Street. The synagogue is beautiful and is one of the historical monuments in Singapore.

The guide who brought us around showed us around the magnificent interior of the synagogue and gave us some background to this synagogue as well as some of the Jewish traditions.

He told us that in the Torah the age of adult responsibility begins with the onset of puberty. At thirteen, a Jewish male qualifies to be a full adult member of the synagogue, with all the accompanying obligations and privileges. These are some of the privileges of a 13 year old male under Torah law:
1. He can be counted in as one of the minimum number of adult Jewish males required for the main public prayers.
2. He may lead the services.
3. He may read from the Torah at the public reading in the synagogue.

Whilst this is new to me that a thirteen year old can have these privileges because he is considered old enough to act responsibly in life, there are something we can learn from this. We generally have a mentality that oppresses the young people - that they are still young and ignorant. This can in turn make them think that they are indeed not really able to influence or make a difference. That maybe they have to wait till they're much older to influence and really do something. That is not true because the Bible says do not despise your youth; God can use someone as young as King David.

As I continue to mentor and disciple the leaders in the Young Adult Ministry, I constantly question how I could help them to step into the plan and purpose that God has destined for them. How could I help them to discover their gifting and catch the vision of what direction God has for them individually, as well as for their ministry?

How do we get them out of the overwhelming world concept of success to one who is really bold to love people and shine for Jesus? And even more than that just sharing their faith, how do we get them to believe that they can shape culture and society? How can we get our young people to start thinking like this?

I realized I have to first change my own mentality into helping our young people realize they can make a difference even right now. I am also convicted that the anointing of the Spirit will continue to give us ideas, and we need to create an environment for them to take on responsibility and given the freedom to do it.

Uncle Henry
7 Sep 10


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