Saturday, August 20, 2011

THYME Magazine

Citizen Journalism with a Better Flavor

Volume III, Issue XXXIII

"We cannot choose the time we live in. We can only choose what we do with the time we are given." -- Gandalf the Wizard to Frodo.

The Greatest Generations

The 'other' weekly news magazine gets it right this week. TIME talks about the new leaders who's skills were forged on the field of battle in Iraq and Afghanistan, comparing them to the 'Greatest Generation' that fought World War II. Still, it must be remembered that the generation that won World War II spent its childhood in the Great Depression. They were inspired by a Great Generation who raised them in these hard times and instilled in them the drive to deal with the times.

The noble values passed from Mother to Son for generations have often borne fruit in greatness. I've met a few heroes in my day, and they're not always formed on the battlefield. In fact, I have seen many lives tragically impacted by their experiences of war. Many of my generation grew up in the promise and luxury of Twentieth Century America only to see that world shattered by the experience of Vietnam. The battlefield does not produce leaders so much as it shows who they are. Many people spend the rest of their lives recovering from the dark experiences of war.

The Holy Scriptures make a strong statement that one generation must teach the next the fear and admonition of the Lord. Indeed one tends to live out the values "caught" from parents and other mentors. The mentoring of young people is a serious responsibility indeed. Each generation faces its own unique challenges.

Popular culture does much to derail this process. Parents are treated as a bother in much popular media and values that have endured for thousands of years are routinely questioned in the halls of acedemia. In the 1960's a 24 year old man was likely to be married and going to school on the GI Bill. He was struggling to become a breadwinner and, guess what, he was an adult! His Dad's experience likely meant something to him and guided him.

Today that same 24 year old male is likely to be living in a sort of prolonged adolescense according to researcher Kay Hymowitz, who writes for City Journal. Sadly, growing up became optional in the latter portion of the Twentieth Century.

The current hard times might be the crucible in which the next truely great generation is formed. As young people rediscover the simple joys of Faith and family, living in tiny homes like our Depression era parents, a renaissance of what really makes us great might just occur.

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