As far as demographic monikers go, we frequently read and hear about Baby Boomers (those born 1945-1964) and Millennials (1985-1994). Baby Boomers were at one time the largest demographic, but Millennials are a close second. Advertisers, marketers and churches have spent the last several decades scrambling to reach these two sizeable generations.
Somewhere along the way a generation was labeled, but soon forgotten – Generation X (those born 1965-84). You guessed it – this is my generation. We are not sizeable enough to warrant the attention of marketers, or anybody else for that matter. At one time my generation was labeled the “Slacker Generation” which is now considered ironic because Generation X statistically holds the highest education levels among other age groups. The Pew Research Center has described my generation as America’s neglected “middle child.”
Oh well, in time all generations will be forgotten. I guess my generation has a head start.
As a people of faith our motivation is not to “target” one generation above another. We are here, to put it simply, to love one another. It is a faith issue. It is a justice issue. It is religion at its most basic.
As I write this article, mid-term elections have just finished and now we will see if the victors will live into the promises. Here is my hope for my generation as well as all generations:
- That every life be valued. This includes the citizen who holds membership with the Daughters of the American Revolution as well as the immigrant trying to start over; the Native American living in poverty on a reservation and the incarcerated serving a life sentence. God has imbued all human beings with the gift of being created in the Image of God. It is a good and holy gift and we should value one another accordingly.
- That love of neighbor guide public policy and private practice. Imagine how this world would be transformed if we took Jesus at his word when he said that the love of others is one of the two greatest commandments.
- That the highest ambition is to serve and not be served. All generations struggle against the evil forces of privilege and entitlement. What if we actively sought to change that notion by picking up our own towels to wash the feet of others?
Just like our elected officials today, my generation will indeed one day be no more. And so will yours. And so will all other generations. The Bible reminds us: “And the world and its desire are passing away, but those who do the will of God live forever.” (1 John 2:16) What of your life will live on when your generation is no more?
Grace to you my brother and sister,