What Lack Our Traditional Catholic Kids Yet?
And behold one came and said to him: Good master, what good shall I do that I may have life everlasting? Who said to him: Why asketh thou me concerning good? One is good, God. But if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. He said to him: Which? And Jesus said: Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness. Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. The young man saith to him: All these I have kept from my youth, what is yet wanting to me?
Jesus saith to him: If thou wilt be perfect, go sell what thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come follow me. And when the young man had heard this word, he went away sad: for he had great possessions. (Matthew 19:16-22)
"The young man saith to him: All these I have kept from my youth, what is yet wanting to me?" (Mt. 19:20) This is one of the scariest statements in the Bible, because it speaks to what is in the heart of many young people who grow up in our traditional Catholic churches and our Catholic schools. They have kept the commandments of God all their lives so they wonder what could be lacking what is still wanting in there life. Notice three things about this young man that I believe are present in many of our Catholic kids as well.
He was only aware of what had been emphasized to him.
We give our kids the list that makes them "good" and they start to believe they are good. Satan uses our lists against us. We must be cautious not to allow our kids to confuse our rules for God's Justice.
He knew in his heart that something was lacking.
A relationship with God does not begin with our goodness. It must begin with your sinfulness and his perfect Justice. Our kids know they are lacking that real relationship with Christ even though they have "obeyed" all the rules we have given them. Teach them how to walk with God not just in our rules.
He wanted more.
Herein is the real issue. The kids who are "perfect" want more because they know they are not fulfilled in their works. Eventually they will seek it and that is why we lose them. Either they will rebel against their faith or they will seek it elsewhere.
There is danger in kids being in the shelter of our constant control. They grow up thinking they have all there is yet knowing something is missing. Make certain that above all things they learn to have a personal walk with the Lord.