The Time Machine
A young man named Joseph, residing in East Africa, had just received his first Bible. Dressed in lightweight and modest dress clothes for church, Joseph advised an interviewer, "I feel like the richest man in the world."
"Why?" the interviewer asked.
"Because for the first time in my life, I have the Word of God," as he raised a recently received Bible.
After sharing the story at our youth group meeting on March 22, 2009, I asked for the youth with the most advanced cell phone (internet access, etc.) to come forward. I then asked all of the young peopl... if you had basically nothing and I offered you this cell phone or a Bible, which would you take. Members of the youth group were split with most avoiding the decision by saying nothing.
We then held a contest. I gave the Bible to a second youth and asked the youth with cell phone to have it ready for use. After instructing each to find the answer to the question, "Where are you, God?", both youth were not sure how to proceed. I suggested that Matthew 18:20 would provide an answer. The youth with the cell phone "googled" the verse but the youth with the Bible found it first and read, "where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am". We discussed the fact that the Bible advised us that God was in our midst that evening. Still, some but not all were ready to say, like Joseph, "I am the richest man in the world because I have the Word of God".
We then did a second contest. I asked the young man with the cell phone to do a search to find a Time Machine, a way for him to go back in time. Arindam looked at me and said, "I can't".
Picking up a worn Bible, with a binding held together with tape, I asked a third youth member to turn to the opening of the Bible and to read the dedication page. It read, "Presented to Tim Ferguson by Mom and Dad, Easter 1963". I advised our young people that this Bible was my time machine because, after receiving it, I determined to read it through at a chapter or two every night.....
As I read through, I underlined verses that were meaningful to me. When I received that Bible,
I was fifteen years old about the average age of the young people in our group. Now, when I open the Bible and look at what I underlined, it is like entering a time machine, going back to the verses that had special meaning to me as a teenager, forty-eight years ago.
We ended our discussion with me challenging the youth to begin building their own time machine by regularly reading scripture and noting the verses (underlining or some other way) that truly touch their hearts. To be continued.
Want to learn about another use of a Time Machine for Christian youth?
It is found in: the Christmas activities chapter of Not the Same Old, Done-it-before Youth Meetings
Come visit our second website filled with more Christian youth games and activities at: Christian Youth Stars