‘Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, “I find no pleasure in them.’ (Eccl 12:1).

THE book of Ecclesiastes is attributed to King Solomon as its author. He tested life and at the end concluded that all is but vanity upon vanity. And so, in his closing admonition to his readers, he devoted this chapter to the youths. He was quick to draw their attention to the fact that they need to remember their Creator while they engage life. Therefore, they are not to forget or to overlook Him.

  We are aware that youth is a golden time in one’s life. At that time, a youth is full of agility and adventure. There is no dull moment, always on the move and damming attendant consequences. A writer now concluded: ‘youth is full of pleasure but old age is full of care’.

  The advice to the youth is very timely because some usually may end up mismanaging their opportunities in life. We know that opportunity lost can never be regained. There is need for caution in order not to gamble with one’s future. These Bible quotations are very essential about the Creator: Gen. 1:1, Job 26:7, Ps. 102:25 and Acts 14:15. Yes, He made the youths and us in His own image to worship Him and glorify Him forever.

  It is unfortunate that some youths are uninterested in the Creator and things pertaining to Him. The way some live and conduct themselves speak volume to this fact. Sometimes we may attribute it to the type of company they keep or the nature of programmes they watch on television or recently on the Internet. But the Biblical admonition is good to be taken to heart: ‘bad company corrupts good morals’ (1 Cor. 15:33).

  However, we have a couple of youths that the Lord used mightily in the scriptures in different situations. We note with great confidence Joseph in the household of Potiphar and the way he conducted himself even in the face of seduction by the madam of the house. He was bold to say, ‘how can I do such a great evil against my master?’ (Gen. 39:7-18). It is to be noted that what Joseph achieved at that time was made possible because as a youth, he remembered his Creator and was aware that God could not have forgiven him had he let Him down at that moment. Just fresh from Valentine Day, how many youths stood for the Lord without compromising their standards?

  The case of the Recabites and the admonition from their grandfather Jonadab is highly illustrative here, too. They not only heed the commandment of their grandfather by not taking strong wines, but also were moved to remember their Creator as they remained faithful to Him and never faulted in their obedience to Him. Read the rest of the story in Ezekiel 35:1-10. We may ask, are there not some young men and women today, who glory in strong wine? To them, it does not matter. But it will matter sometime, someday, as every person including the youth will give an account of himself or herself to God. At that time, had I known may be too late.

  I am persuaded to believe that if the youths remember their Creator before the evil days (old age) comes, they will not be ashamed because the benevolent God will take care of them at the twilight of their lives. Therefore, in order not to forget the Creator, we advise the youth that they should make time to study the Word of God daily.

Ven. Ernest Onuoha
Rector, Ibru International Ecumenical Centre,
Delta State.

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