It is common knowledge in history that during the days of our forefathers, life was not as pleasant as it seems today.
For instance, they had to cover long distances by foot, since there was no means of transportation i.e. auto bikes and mobiles to convey them from one place to another.
But today we are having more and more cars in our society to the point that an individual owns more than ten to fifty cars.
Secondly, our forefathers used to live in mud and thatched houses, and those who were considered rich back then only ended up building flats or bungalows.
Looking around our societies today we can’t even count the skyscrapers, mansions, and beautiful houses we see.
And for these very reasons, people’s ambitions have risen to a point where they would do anything: lie, cheat, steal, deal, and kill, just so they could be able to acquire the beautiful things that life has to offer today.
Therefore, surveying these instances, one will discover that it would have been much easier for our forefathers to serve God since these beautiful things were not there to distract them. And on the other hand, it is much harder for the people of this generation to serve God because of the desire to meet up with ‘the better life’ or so they call it.
And if you embark on the research you will discover that this ambition is ninety-nine, if not a hundred percent, found among the youths i.e. young boys and girls. ‘The boy wants to live large so he could get with them girls, while the girl is out on the lookout for them boys who can take care of all her needs.
Another thing you will discover in history is that the choice of relationships which was always aimed for marriage during the time of our fore-parents was parentally arranged i.e. it was the parents who would look for, chose, and arrange whom their children will get married to.
And because of this act there were always fewer cases of sexual immorality; while much more cases of a blissful union in marital homes where good children were being raised. And this used to happen because the parents who made the choices of relationship for their children did that based on the good parental background, upbringing, and characters they found in the lives of their would-be in-laws.
But today the reverse is the case because young men and women are allowed to choose their life partners, and since these kinds lack foresight and experience they end up making the wrong choices all over the place.
A young man will get married to a young girl because she is beautiful and comes from a rich home while a young girl will get married to a young man who will be able to provide her with all the good things that life could afford, and when things don’t turn out the way they thought the story becomes ‘when Satan in the family Trouble! Trouble!! Home plus divorce’.
Let us not even mention the boyfriend and girlfriend thing which is the order of the day in our society today. It is sad to discover that before the age of ten most infants has engaged in one sexual act or the other. And because of sexual immorality, our youths cannot keep themselves pure and be able to serve God.
The meaning of Ecclesiastes 12:1-7.
Ecclesiastes 12:1-7 extorts human beings to remember their creator in their youthful days remembering the fact that they will not be young forever because they will someday become old and eventually die.
Let us outline that bible verse at this point:
Remember now your creator in the days of your youth, before the difficult days come, and the years draw near when you say, “I have no pleasure in them”: while the sun and the light, the moon and the stars, are not darkened, and the clouds do not return after the rain; in the day when the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men bow down; when the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look through the windows grow dim;
when the doors are shut in the street, and the sound of grinding is low; when one rises up at the sound of a bird, and all the daughters of music are brought low; also when they are afraid of height, and of terrors in the way; when the almond tree blossoms, the grasshopper is a burden,
and desire fails. For man goes to his eternal home, and the mourners go about the street. Remember your creator before the silver cord is loosed, or the golden bowl is broken, or the pitcher shattered at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the well.
Then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.(Ecclesiastes 12:1-7)
In summary, the scripture above is trying to remind us of the fact that there comes a time in human life when the desire or ambition for worldly things ceases; and that is when the human being has gotten to old age and at the verge of death.
And this goes to proves our earlier point that ambitions for achievement are ninety-nine if not a hundred percent found among the youth.
Thus, the scripture above urges us to remember our creator while we are young; and this we can only do if we are able to abstain or restrict the urge for worldly possessions which burns like wildfire in the minds of every young person.
That was why Paul wrote to Timothy: a young man who was willing to serve God.
Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.(2 Timothy 2:22)
And so the next scripture which precedes where we took our first text revealed to us that the youthful days are the days of enjoyment, and reminds us to never forget that God will judge all our actions. It concludes by telling us to remember the days when we will be old and unable to enjoy anything in life because we will never be young forever.
Rejoice, O young man in your youth, and let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth; walk in the ways of your heart, and in the sight of your eyes; but know that for all these God will bring you into judgment. Therefore remove sorrow from your heart, and put away evil from you flesh, for childhood and youth are vanity.(Ecclesiastes 11:9-10)
How to serve God in your youth.
The following are the ways you can serve God in your youth.
- Understanding the scriptures.
- Putting the words of God into practice.
- Knowing Who God really is.
- Do not love the world or the things of the world.
1. Understanding the scriptures.
As a youth, you must realize that the only way for you to be able to serve God lies in the proper understanding of the scriptures for it is only therein will he knows what God truly wants you to do, and what He doesn’t want you to do.
How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to your word.(Psalm 119:9)
2. Putting the words of God into practice.
After understanding the scriptures, a youth must be able to put the words of God into practice.
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourseves.(James 1:22)
Because the scripture was given by God to guide those who want to serve Him.
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. That the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.(2 Timothy 3:16-17).
3. Knowing Who God really is.
And the apostle John reveals to us that in old age a human being is expected to know Who God really is because in his youthful days the word of God had dwelt in him and made him strong enough to defeat the devil:
I have written to you fathers, because you have known Him who is from the beginning. I have written to you young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the wicked one.(1 John 2:14)
4. Do not love the world or the things of the world.
As a youth, you must not love the world or the things of the world, instead, you must aim to love God the Father and His Son our Lord Jesus Christ.
Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world-the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life-is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.(1 John 2:15-17)