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The best youth leaders are the best wrestlers

Picture of Greg Stier
Greg Stier

Demo_lutte_2“Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured.” Colossians 4:12

Before bedtime almost every night (when I’m not on the road) my 10 year old daughter runs up to me and exclaims, “Let’s wrestle!” And so we do. I usually start with a single leg take down but sometimes she wiggles out of it and ends up “winning.”

Kailey loves to wrestle her daddy and for a long time I didn’t get it because Kailey is a girly girl. She loves pretty dresses and playing with dolls. She loves sugar and spice and everything nice. Wrestling seems out of her realm of girly girl-ness. The whole reality of it made me scratch my head for awhile.

Then one day it hit me, wrestling is Kailey’s own unique way of staying close to me. She loves to embrace her daddy and have mock battles with me because when she does we are close. Like when Jesus wrestled with Jacob in Genesis 39 there is a necessary proximity when two people wrestle.

Now I look forward to my wrestling matches, not just with Kailey, but with God. And that’s what prayer often is, a wrestling match with God.

We try to get him to say “Yes” to our requests and he seeks to get us to “tap out” and surrender to his will. We lunge toward his throne with intercessions on behalf of our unreached teenagers to be rescued and our Christian teenagers to be matured. We, like Epaphras, wrestle in prayer for others that they “may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured.”

Youth leader, are you relentlessly wrestling in prayer with God on behalf of your teenagers? Are you charging God’s throneroom with passionate pleas on behalf of this next generation?

If not, start with a double leg take down on yourself by dropping to your knees right now and praying! That’s how we will ultimately win this next generation and, in the process, we will get closer and closer with our Heavenly Father as we wrestle with him in prayer!

Unlikely Fighter

#1 new release in Evangelism on Amazon

The story of how a fatherless street kid overcame violence, chaos, and confusion to become a radical Christ follower.

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