The Betrayal of Mentors

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Friday, October 30, 2015 0 comments

by Charlie Wolcott

In a sermon by Eric Ludy called “The Most Unlikely Heroes,” I learned of a book titled The Dumbest Generation by Mark Bauerlein. This book is an analysis of our young adult generation and those coming up behind them. Ludy highlights the major points that Bauerlein makes and assuming Ludy’s portrayal of the points are accurate, I have to agree. The current young generation, the new adults that have grown in dependence upon modern technology, have access to the greatest technological achievements man has made and yet are in the worst possible state for living wise, productive lives that have been noticed throughout history. Please note that I consider myself right at the front of this generation (age-wise). So this applies to myself. What am I getting at? Let’s take a look.

In the US today, according to Bauerlein, 75% of the 18-24 year-olds are physically, mentally, and educationally ineligible to join the military. 75%. Three out of four. For reasons like obesity, incompetence (lack of education), lack of acute hearing, and other issues. Bauerlien also addresses several issues that are unique to this generation that was never seen before. What kind of issues? They are bibliophobes, scared of books. They are completely addicted to devices: TVs, games, cell phones, etc. They don’t know how to act in the real world without them. They are totally spineless. There are very few warriors who will rise up and stand for something greater than themselves or for a cause that is not exclusively for their desired benefit. But here is the one that boils my blood the most, and I say this knowing that I am right at the front of this generation and could be classified in this range that Bauerlein is addressing. This one point is that no generation ever has been more prone to betray mentors and teachers than any other in history.

Betrayal of mentors and teachers. A hatred for authority where the person will only listen for what they can get out of it. Once accountability starts playing a role or when they think they know enough to go on their own, they will just as quickly back-stab those who have fed them. We have a generation that thinks they know how to run things better than the generation before them. There is a total disregard for the wisdom and experience of those who have gone before them. And as Ludy describes it: “This behavior is DESPICABLE!”

Why is our young generation like this? Bauerlien seems to connect it to the dependence upon technology, but I think there is a much deeper reason. There is a very unique gap between this generation and the previous one. Never before has there been such a technological jump between two generations where how one generation lives is totally different compared to how the generation before them lived. The generations that fought in WWII and Vietnam had things like telephones, TVs, radios, and cars, and this generation is when the interstate system became heavily used. This young adult generation today grew up with cell phones, fast food service, instant meals, ready mobility, social media, and computers. The previous generation was still learning how to use computers. I personally grew up with an Apple II GS, one of the first computers with a color monitor. My mom has learned how to use a computer but is no expert. My dad, who grew up in the mountains of Colorado without as much as indoor plumbing until he was seven years old, is very technologically challenged. That is how separate these two generations are.

The technological difference between these generations has in part led to an attitude that the older generation is not as smart because they can’t use the technology the younger generation grew up with to the same extent. But technology is not the only issue here. Let us look back to this previous generation, the one that was predominate during Vietnam. What happened during those decades? We saw Spuntnik launched into the upper atmosphere. We saw the removal of prayer from public school in 1962. We saw a lot of social rebellion, both in a good way with MLK Jr’s peaceful protests and in a bad way with Woodstock (the icon of the Hippie movement) and the protests against Vietnam. This is also the time period when abortion was legalized in 1973. This time period sowed seeds of rebellion and now we are seeing the product.

Galatians 6:7 is important to understand: “Do not be deceived. God is not mocked. A man will reap what he sows.” Two key things to grasp here. 1). This applies to both good things and bad things. 2). You will reap what you sow, you will reap more than you sow, and you will reap it later than when you sowed.

The generation before this one lived a time of rebellion against the authorities and thought they could go about doing whatever they wanted. And that attitude is what the current generation observed as they grew into adulthood and have picked it up. But it gets worse. This rebellious generation from the 60s and 70s have pressed the rebellion, trying to enforce it. What do I mean? We have psychologists that determined it was not profitable for a child to be disciplined because it would harm their identity and personality. Parents can’t set their kids straight anymore. Schools are encouraging illicit behavior by establishing peer-pressure systems (enabling bullying), encouraging sexual behavior (with sex education and passing out condoms etc). I can go on and on with what is wrong with this generation, but take note that “disobedience to parents” is one of the things Paul lists as a sign of the generation of the End Times.

What can we do about this? Steve Risner wrote a spectacular post about the need for Fathers in the family. Many of the problems we see today can be traced to the lack of a Biblical fatherly figure in the home. Either the father is missing entirely or he is present but not effective because of either working 80+ hours/week, or abdicating his role of being the authority figure. Look at how the media has portrayed fathers in the last 20-30 years. Bernstein Bears, Home Improvement, football commercials, modern sitcoms, etc. The mom is depicted as the sane, stable person and the dad is deemed a total dunce. If this is the model, should we not be surprised when our youth rebel against them?

Ultimately, this mentality is a reflection of a generation’s attitude towards God. There is no respect for any position of authority that is God-ordained: the father, the church, and the government. Regardless of who is in that position, it is the position that needs to be honored. Paul tells us this in Romans 13:1-7 and the Emperor at the time was Nero, one of the most godless dictators ever. We need to respect the authorities God has put in our lives, because that is respecting God.

Let me wrap up with how Ludy wraps up his sermon: This is the status of the generation we are in. Don’t let this be our title. Let God show himself mighty by using this generation in ways we could only hope to imagine. God has always loved to use the weak, the uneducated, the poor. Today, we have the “Dumbest Generation” ever. The very type of people God loves to use. Let him use you. Surrender to him and obey him. He’ll put you to you use and it will be good. And being part of this generation, I can say for certain that he has used me where every expert who has had a look at me and said I would never amount to much. God had other plans. And they are good plans. Do the job God intended for you to do. Stop rebelling and stop betraying the mentors God has placed over you. They are there for a reason. I am grateful for the teachers I have had. They have helped guide me to where I am today. Perfect? By no means, but they sought the best for me. I don’t want to be one that betrays the hands the feeds me. I’ve seen the harm this betrayal does personally and no good comes of it. Let us not be part of this title.

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