Since the beginning of time every generation of people have asked the question of whether things are worse now than ever before. In the country gospel song, “One Day At A Time” the writer stated “My Jesus I know if you are looking below things are worse now than then.” In the current day I doubt there are many who would not agree with that premise.
I recently came across an article from a clipping of the late Dr. Billy Graham’s newspaper “Question and Answer” column where a young person wrote, “My grandma keeps telling me she thinks it’s harder to be a young person today than when she was growing up.” I’m not sure I understand what she means. Was her generation more religious?”
Billy replied, “Yes, it may have been more religious, or at least more committed to the moral and spiritual values God has given us in the Bible. Our society has grown increasingly secular and even anti-religious. In some ways it may be harder for a young person to avoid the world’s pitfalls and pressures. Immorality and selfishness are glorified in the media, and pressure to conform can be overwhelming. But in other ways the world has not changed because human nature has not changed, .nor has our need for God.”
From Dr. Graham’s reply we can surmise he felt that young people and old alike have to struggle with the temptations which are so wide and readily available in the world today. .Although the internet can be described as a blessing and curse; it is very difficult to weigh the good when we see all the bad. The pornography has veered out of sight into a multi-billion dollar business that is available to just any age group. Even worse is the youth of our country have been fooled by child molesters and abductors. Hardly a day passes without a report on another adult connecting with teens in search of one who will bite on their story and run away from home to meet them. Youth running away from home may have been a problem in the past, but the means is now right in their home via the internet.
When I was a teen alcohol was available through adults purchasing the stuff for the youth and continues for the under-aged. However, fake identification cards appear to be readily accessible to all ages. Also, many youth have graduated to marijuana and other illegal drugs. All of these are much more dangerous than cigarettes and beer of our day. Many are experimenting with a sundry of prescription drugs or other illegal types. What blows my mind is why youth and adults need drugs to get high. Why do they want to escape the realities of their day to substances that can destroy their minds or result in death? These few examples just scratch the surface of the magnitude of the problems our country faces.
I contend that what society faces today came from the drastic change in the American family life in that there has been a mass exodus of families from church. In my youth most families in my hometown were in church on Sunday morning.
The trend in the last thirty to forty years is that the parents of children left the church leaving the grandparents hopefully to shoulder the responsibility of seeing their children are in church. In this generation those who were parents are now grandparents so there is no one to care for the children’s spiritual needs. Who is going to teach children of today about God and His Son Jesus Christ?
Over a hundred years ago, the great French statesman, Alexis De Tocqueville visited America. Upon his return home he wrote: "I sought for the greatness of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers--- and it was not there, in fertile fields and boundless forests --- it was not there, in her rich mines and her vast world commerce ---it was not there, in her democratic Congress and matchless Constitution --- and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the greatness of her genius power. America is great because she is good; and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.”
I would hope that if Mr. De Tocqueville were living today could write the same things about America’s churches. All of us know that a few selected churches are thriving and God is blessing them. However, I do know that this country is in trouble when it comes to being righteous which means good. We cannot possibly continue in sin and God continue to bless and keep us free.